UCSF Fresno Selects High School Students to Research Valley Health Issues This Summer

FRESNO – Eleven students from the central San Joaquin Valley out of 92 applicants were recently selected to take part in the 29th UCSF Fresno Summer Biomedical Internship Program (UCSF Fresno SBI). UCSF Fresno SBI pairs selected students who are entering their senior year of high school with faculty members at UCSF Fresno to work on research projects for two months over the summer. The program is aimed at providing students with hands‐on biomedical research experience while introducing them to careers in health and medicine.

Some of the research projects students will be working on involve cancer, gender bias in medical education, genetic medicine, inflammatory bowel disease, pulmonary hypertension and surgery. The students will conduct research at California State University, Fresno, Community Regional Medical Center and the UCSF Fresno Center for Medical Education and Research.

The students will present their research findings Wednesday, Aug. 3 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the auditorium at the UCSF Fresno Center, located at 155 N. Fresno St. in Fresno.

Students selected for the 2016 UCSF Fresno Summer Biomedical Internship Program include:

  • Mizna Akbar from Clovis North High School in Fresno
  • Faith Bundros from Clovis High School in Clovis
  • Simon Cao from Clovis North High School
  • Alexander Ewing from Buchanan High School in Clovis
  • Allison Heyne from Clovis West High School in Fresno
  • Mandeep Kaur from Central West High School in Fresno
  • Isabelle Plumb from Edison High School in Fresno
  • Manjit Ruprem from Buchanan High School
  • Kenan Sagouspe from San Joaquin Memorial High School in Fresno
  • Hena Sihota from Kingsburg High School in Kingsburg
  • Maya Srikanth from Clovis North High School

“After high school, I plan to attend a four‐year university to pursue a biology degree with an emphasis in pre‐medicine,” said Sihota from Kingsburg. “Then I plan to attend medical school to pursue a career as a neurosurgeon. I have a passion for helping people and I want to make a difference. For me, there is no greater individual victory than knowing I’ve helped another person.”

“I hope to become a biomedical scientist specializing in either advancing current medical technology or drug discovery,” said Cao from Clovis North High School. “I love finding creative solutions to difficult problems. I hope to create treatments and technologies that are more effective while making treatments easier to administer.”

“For the past three years, I’ve spent my weekends volunteering at Community Regional Medical Center,” said Kaur from Central West High School. “I’ve watched medical professionals work hand‐in‐hand to save a code‐blue patient’s life. I’ve had the privilege of discharging thankful patients and hearing their amazing recovery stories. So while some people think hospitals are scary, I love every aspect of them and am captivated by the medical field every time I volunteer. My ultimate aspiration is to become a surgeon.”

Since it was established in 1988, more than 200 high‐achieving students have graduated from the Summer Biomedical Research Internship Program. Many of the SBI graduates are now health professionals. A number of them have returned to the San Joaquin Valley and are working as doctors, pharmacists and nurses.

Students from Fresno, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced and Tulare counties are eligible to apply. Students are selected based on academic merit, questionnaire responses, interviews, and letters of recommendation from their teachers.

UCSF Fresno SBI is supported by donations from corporations and individuals within the community. For more information, please visit http://www.fresno.ucsf.edu/sbi/ or email  [email protected] or call (559) 499‐6423.