Soreal Gray, 2018
School: Metro Academic and Classical High School
Post secondary plans: College (potentially Maryville, Wash U, University of Iowa, U Chicago, Stanford). Interested in a career in Pharmacy or Criminology.
Lab: Dr. Wayne Yokoyama
Department: Medicine, Division of Rheumatology
Project Title: Absence of CD73 on NK cells
Favorite part about SF: Getting to meet new people, a great mentor, and lab experience.
How has SF motivated you: It motivated me to continue on the path I’m on towards college and a career in health science.
Justin Plummer, 2018
School: Lift for Life Academy
Post secondary plans: To major in social work focused on marriage and become principal at my high school
Lab: Dr. Gautam Dantas
Department: Pathology & Immunology
Project Title: Alternative Ways to Make Bacteria Retain Plasmids without Involving Antibiotics
Favorite part about SF: My favorite part of SF was the students. Everyone was so nice and so welcoming. I even still communicate with some of the people from the program.
How has SF motivated you: SF helped me to always push harder and step out of the box, even if something is very hard just stick to it and always have an open mind. This impacted my life because from now on I will never give up on anything. I will try my best to become the best person that I can be.
Maresha Perry, 2018
School: Jennings Senior High School
Post secondary plans: I plan to attend a four-year university and complete my education in with a masterâ€™s degree
Lab: Dr. Christina de Guzman Strong
Department: Medicine, Division of Dermatology
Project Title: Population Specific Involucrin Enhancer Variants Affect Enhancer Activity
Favorite part about SF: My favorite part of Summer Focus was doing the experiments and hanging out with my mentor and PI. Also, developing my own scientific paper.
How has SF motivated you: Summer Focus actually motivated me into thinking about going into the medical field and maybe pursuing a career as a cosmetic dermatologist.
Jordan Peck, 2017
Post secondary plans:Cell and Molecular Biology at Tulane University, pre-medical and honors program
Lab: Dr. Jason C Mills
Department: Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology
Project Title: Heat shock protein expression after gastric damage
Favorite part about SF: I absolutely loved the mentorship component, especially with my grad student and the other PhD students in the lab, but also the opportunities to work with other researchers, professionals, and students in various capacities
How has SF motivated you: SF gave me a great sense of the world of research and how I fit into it. It has encouraged me to pursue research while in college, and given me the confidence to get in on projects. It made me consider how research might fit into a medical career, and given me the skills to excel in scientific thinking.
Clarinda Tan, 2016
School: Parkway Central High School
Post secondary plans: Double Majoring in Global Health and Health Care Management at Washington University in St. Louis
Lab: Dr. Yehuda Ben-Shahar
Project Title: Towards a Better Understanding of How the Voltage-Gated K+ Channel sei Mediates Heat Stress Response
Favorite part about SF: My favorite part about Summer Focus was getting the opportunity to interact with individuals outside of my high school. Whether it was my peers in the Summer Focus program, my mentors in the program, or the graduate students in my lab, everyone was so willing to share their stories and experiences. I gained invaluable information about the college application process, experimentation, and the importance of asking for help when needed.
How has SF motivated you: Summer Focus pairs you with many mentors who help you throughout the program. These graduate and post-graduate students meet with you on a regular basis to guide your success. They share their knowledge, kindness, and support you throughout your journey. I cannot thank my mentors enough for their help!