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May 15, 2007


NEW YORK, May 15, 2007 – Israel Gonzalez, who graduated from The City College of New York (CCNY) with a B.S. in Biology in September 2006, was awarded a Salk Scholarship from The City University of New York (CUNY) at an awards ceremony today at Baruch College.  He is one of eight CUNY students to receive the prestigious award this year, which carries an $8,000 stipend for medical school.

“This award has reinforced my confidence that a regular guy really can have an impact on science research,” said Mr. Gonzalez. “I would like to thank everyone who has helped me succeed in my studies and research, in particular my mentor, Professor Robert Anderson, and CCAPP (City College Academy for Professional Preparation) Program Director Dr. Millicent Roth and her staff.”

Salk Scholars are selected by panel of distinguished physicians, all Salk Scholars themselves, based on the quality of their research, academic excellence and recommendations by professors and mentors.

Working in Professor Anderson’s laboratory, Mr. Gonzalez used Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to model the distributions, or ranges, of species based on climatic conditions.  He presented this research at the annual meeting of the American Society of Mammologists last summer in Amherst, Mass.

Growing up on the Lower East Side, Mr. Gonzalez learned at an early age about the challenges that face an economically, educationally and medically disadvantaged population.  He plans to use GIS techniques for epidemiological studies of diseases affecting minority and underserved communities.  

At CCNY, Mr. Gonzalez, who will enter medical school in the fall, received the Professor Marin Sacks/Sylvia F. Rubin Award for environmental science research.

The Salk Scholarships are the legacy of Dr. Salk, who developed the polio vaccine in 1955.  A 1934 graduate of City College, Dr. Salk turned down a ticker tape parade in honor of his discovery and asked instead that the money be used for scholarships.

About The City College of New York

For 160 years, The City College of New York has provided low-cost, high-quality education for New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines. Over 13,000 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the School of Architecture, the School of Education, the Grove School of Engineering, the Center for Worker Education and the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education.