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K-State News
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51 undergraduate students selected to join university's cancer research teams

Monday, Dec. 2, 2013



MANHATTAN -- The Johnson Cancer Research Center at Kansas State University is giving 51 undergraduate students the chance to conduct cancer research projects.

The center's undergraduate Cancer Research Award program promotes early participation in laboratory research, encouraging students to consider careers in cancer research and medicine while they're still deciding what academic and professional paths to take.

"We are enlisting a new generation of cancer researchers and medical workers, and helping train them to do scientific research," said Rob Denell, center director and a university distinguished professor of biology.

The award program, which is open to Kansas State University undergraduate students interested in doing cancer-relevant research, provides $1,000 awards to about 50 students a year, and $1,000 per student for research expenses.

"These are outstanding students working closely with faculty on real research projects, and some, as we've seen in the past, will undoubtedly go on to be top scientists and physicians," Denell said.

Students applied for the awards by co-writing research proposals with faculty mentors affiliated with the center. The awardees conduct their research in the mentors' laboratories in the spring semester.

The students will be recognized in the spring at a banquet attended by their families, center supporters and university faculty and administrators.

The center also provides other undergraduate scholarships and support for graduate student and faculty research and training. All of these programs are funded through private gifts.

The center supports Kansas State University cancer research, education and outreach. More information is available at http://cancer.k-state.edu or by calling 785-532-6705.

Cancer Research Award winners are:

Erika Krueger, senior in chemistry, Americus; Kelsie Cole, sophomore in biology, and Macy Garcia, junior in biochemistry, both from Andover; Adam Schieferecke, freshman in microbiology, Bennington; Benjamin Lagaly, sophomore in biology, Colwich; Jenny Barriga, senior in chemistry, and Nallely Barron-Garcia, senior in microbiology, both from Dodge City; Elizabeth Studer, senior in biology, Frankfort; Thuy Cao, junior in biochemistry, Garden City.

From Greater Kansas City: Katherine Sensenich, sophomore in microbiology, Leawood; Christopher Mehrer, senior in chemical engineering, and Emily Schnell, senior in electrical engineering, both from Lenexa; Eric Geanes, senior in biology, Jamilah Watkins, junior in life sciences, and Brandon Pfannenstiel, senior in microbiology, Olathe; Rob Breeden, junior in biology, Emil Ewert, sophomore in biology, and Megan Murray, junior in biology, all from Overland Park; Jaden Anderson, sophomore in biology, and Dedan McEllhiney, senior in microbiology, both from Shawnee; and Leiming Tang, senior in biochemistry, Stilwell.

James Arpin, senior in biology, and Madison Caywood, junior in chemistry, both from Hutchinson; Ashton Allen, senior in biology, Junction City; Cody Simmons, senior in biology, Leonardville.

From Manhattan: August Fitch, junior in chemistry; Wren Michaels, junior in microbiology; Job Shiach, junior in biology; Susan Whitaker, senior in biochemistry; and Hollie Wickham, sophomore in life sciences.

Maia Carlson, junior in biology, Norton; Sarah Cossey, sophomore in biology, Ogden; Melanie Sowards, junior in chemistry, Pleasanton; Jonathan Bernard, junior in biology, South Hutchinson.

From Topeka: Amanda Bradley, junior in biology; Dillon Fairchild, senior in biological systems engineering; Benton McGivern, senior in kinesiology; Michael Mohan, senior in biochemistry; Alexander Ondracek, senior in microbiology; Jordan Parker, junior in biology; Erika Peters, sophomore in microbiology; James Rogers, senior in anthropology and premedicine; Eric Strand, senior in chemical engineering; and Katie Turner, senior in biology.

Jeremy Goering, senior in microbiology, Valley Center; and Brianne Pierce, senior in microbiology, Wichita.

From out of state: Christine Spartz, junior in chemistry, Ellington, Conn.; Brett McMillin, junior in biology, Columbia, Mo.; German Cuevas, freshman in biology, Uniontown, Pa.;and Zachary Goldsmith, junior in microbiology, Germantown, Tenn.

From out of country: Ankush Gakhar, junior in electrical engineering, India.


Johnson Cancer Research Center


Johnson Cancer Research Center

News tip

Americus, Andover, Bennington, Colwich, Dodge City, Frankfort, Garden City, Hutchinson, Junction City, Leawood, Lenexa, Leonardville, Manhattan, Norton, Ogden, Olathe, Overland Park, Pleasanton, Shawnee, South Hutchinson, Stilwell, Topeka, Valley Center and Wichita, Kan.; Ellington, Conn.; Columbia, Mo.; Uniontown, Pa.; and Germantown, Tenn.


Download the following photo.

Award recipients

Recipients of the Cancer Research Award from Kansas State University's Johnson Cancer Research Center.

Written by

Marcia Locke

At a glance

Fifty-one Kansas State University undergraduates are getting the chance to do cancer-research related projects with Cancer Research Awards from the Johnson Cancer Research Center.