UCSF Fresno Gives Students Hands-On Biomedical Research Experience

FRESNO – While most students prefer to spend the summer pursuing nonacademic interests, 12 high school students from Clovis, Fresno, Kingsburg and Merced are working with faculty physicians at UCSF Fresno to research health issues and examine data. The students are taking part in the 32nd UCSF Fresno Summer Biomedical (SBI) Internship Program, which pairs selected students, who are going into their senior year of high school, with faculty members to work on research projects for two months over the summer.

The students will present their research findings Wednesday, July 31 at 6 p.m. in the auditorium at UCSF Fresno, 155 N. Fresno Street, in Fresno.

Faculty-student research projects involve: cancer; changes in use of antihyperglycemic medications to treat diabetes; complex pediatrics care and outcomes; congenital syphilis; diabetes and endocrine-educational websites; food databases; genetics; post-operative fever; pre-term birth interventions; and hip preservation.

Students selected to participate in the SBI include:

  • Hazim Ahamed from University High School, mentored by Yu-Hung Kuo, MD, chief, Neurosurgery, UCSF Fresno
  • Scott Cao from Clovis North High School, mentored by Joseph Shen, MD, associate clinical professor, Department of Pediatrics, UCSF Fresno
  • Joshua Hahm from Buchanan High School, mentored by Mark Ayoub, MD, clinical instructor, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, UCSF Fresno  
  • Ariana Infante from Edison High School, mentored by Subhashini Ladella, MD, associate professor, Department of Obstetrics/Gynecology, UCSF Fresno  
  • Saneh Kahlon from Kingsburg High School, mentored by Alya Ahmad, MD, associate clinical professor, Department of Pediatrics, UCSF Fresno  
  • Richa Kumar from Clovis North, mentored by Jason Bush, PhD, associate professor, Department of Biology, Fresno State
  • Nina Li from University High, mentored by Robert Kollmorgen, DO, assistant professor, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, UCSF Fresno  
  • Luciana Melgar from Kingsburg High, mentored by Mark Stecker, MD, PhD, chief, Neurology, UCSF Fresno
  • Madilyne Moua from Golden Valley High School, mentored by Richa Kaushal, MD, assistant clinical professor, Department of Pediatrics, UCSF Fresno
  • Keyara Piri from University High, mentored by Renee Kinman, MD, PhD, associate clinical professor, Department of Pediatrics, UCSF Fresno  
  • Nathan Theng from Clovis North, mentored by Soe Naing, MD, director, Endocrinology Division, UCSF Fresno
  • Vincent Wang from Buchanan High, mentored by Dr. Kinman

“One of my current career goals is to become an emergency physician,” said Ariana Infante. “I might not be able to change the world, but if I could save the life of a person, that at least changes the world of the patient and gives them a chance to live life once again. I know this is an extremely demanding career, but I will and want to work extremely hard to achieve it.”

“I aspire to become a doctor,” said Joshua Hahm. “Admittedly, I’m not sure as to what specialist I wish to become, I am certain of the fact that I want to help people.”

“Our hope is that by introducing students to careers in health and the health sciences, they will be inspired to pursue related careers that enable them to put their education and talents to work to help improve health in the San Joaquin Valley,” said Tiffany Robinson, coordinator of the UCSF Fresno SBI Program.  

Students from Fresno, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced and Tulare counties are eligible to apply to the SBI. Students are selected based on academic merit, questionnaire responses, interviews, and letters of recommendation from their teachers. In addition to research experiences, students also participate in field trips, lectures and discussions with medical residents and medical students.

For more information, please visit https://www.fresno.ucsf.edu/sbi/ or email [email protected]   or call (559) 499-6423.