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K-State Today

June 13, 2016



K-State hosts an intern and sends an intern through the Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Center of Excellence

By Sarah Hancock

Darla Quijada

The Institute for Infectious Animal Diseases, or IIAD, at Texas A&M University selected four undergraduate students through a nationwide application process to participate in the 10-week IIAD Summer Internship Program. One intern is a K-State student, and the other intern is spending the summer at K-State.

Darla Quijada, a senior at the University of Vermont, is spending the summer in Manhattan. Quijada is majoring in animal science and minoring in chemistry and statistics. She intends to apply to either graduate or veterinary school and to pursue a career in infectious disease. Quijada's mentors are Ken Burton, program director, and Craig Beardsley, program administrator, at the National Agricultural Biosecurity Center.

Quijada will build on the project started by last year's intern, which is conducting a pathways risk analysis for selected high-consequence transboundary animal disease introduction into U.S. livestock. Quijada also will spend one week attending the Transboundary Animal Disease Summer Program sponsored by the Center of Excellence for Emerging and Zoonotic Animal Diseases at the Biosecurity Research Institute, where she will learn about high-consequence transboundary animal diseases and high containment research.

Tyler Pohlenz, Wichita, is a senior at K-State majoring in animal science and minoring in entomology. He plans to apply to graduate school following graduation. Job Lopez, assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine, and Adalberto Perez de Leon, laboratory director at the Knipling-Bushland U.S. Livestock Insects Research Laboratory, will serve as Pohlenz's mentors. Pohlenz will study the molecular biology of vector–pathogen interactions for relapsing fever.

Read more information about the internships and the Institute for Infectious Animal Diseases.