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Four CCNY Graduating Seniors Awarded Salk Scholarships

2013 Salk Scholars Susanna Nguy, Ivan Santiago and Emma Schatoff
2013 Salk Scholar Alana Lewis

Alana Lewis, Susanna Nguy, Ivan Santiago and Emma Schatoff, members of The City College of New York Class of 2013, have been selected to receive the 2013 Jonas E. Salk Scholarship awarded by The City University of New York. All four students plan to apply the Scholarship’s $8,000 stipend toward medical school or PhD study.
“We are thrilled that these outstanding City College students have now become part of Jonas Salk’s legacy,” said CCNY President Lisa S. Coico in congratulating them. “They have taken advantage of mentoring and research opportunities afforded to them at City College that helped them develop the qualities that will enable them to become outstanding physicians and researchers.”

The Jonas E. Salk Scholarships were created by New York City in 1955 to honor Dr. Salk, a member of the CCNY Class of 1934, who earlier that year developed the first vaccine against polio. CUNY awards the scholarships annually to graduates of CUNY senior colleges who have demonstrated sound character, outstanding scholarship and the promise of significant contributions to medical research. The winning students will be recognized in a ceremony May 16 at Baruch College.

About the 2013 Salk Scholars from City College

Alana Lewis was a biology major from South Richmond Hill who graduated in February with a 3.7 GPA. In the fall, she will attend medical school at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. From 2010 to 2012, she conducted research with Professor of Chemistry Mark Steinberg that focused on analyzing the effects of UVB (ultraviolet B) light and arsenic on normal human epithelial keratinocytes.

She participated in a service-learning project investigating ways to combat rising obesity in Harlem that led to establishment of a farmers market at Montefiore Park. She also volunteered at New York University as a patient advocate in the emergency department at Bellevue Hospital Center. In addition to the Salk Scholarship, her honors include: the David and Goldie Blanksteen Scholarship (2009 – 2011); the Peter Vallone Scholarship (2007 – 2011), and the National Coalition of 100 Black Women Scholarship (2010).

Susanna Nguy, a biology major from Brooklyn, will attend the New York University School of Medicine in the fall. She expects to graduate from CCNY May 31 with a 3.9 GPA. Since 2011, she has been conducting research with Dr. Kamilah Ali, assistant professor of biology, on the functional role of apolipoprotein D (ApoD) in murine macrophages to better understand ApoD’s role in atherosclerosis. In addition, she has been a research assistant in the Summer Clinical Oncology Research Experience (SCORE) and Enhanced Clinical Oncology Research Experience (EnCORE) at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC).

She has also done volunteer work at MSKCC, NY Presbyterian-Weill Cornell Medical Center and Lutheran Medical Center. In addition, she gave piano lessons to disadvantaged children for the Salvation Army, tutored elementary school children for Friends of the Children NY and assisted with teaching immigrants English at the Sunset Park Even Start in Brooklyn.

Her other honors and awards include: the Edmund Baermann Scholarship in Natural Sciences (2012); the Athena Award for Excellence in Clinical Research (2010); the Rebecca S. and William J. Horvath ’36 Science Award (2011); the Edward I. Koch Scholarship in Public Service (2011 – 2013); the Peter Vallone Scholarship, (2009 – 2013) and the Brooklyn Tech – CCNY Scholarship (2009 – 2013).

Ivan Santiago, a resident of the Bronx, is completing the BS/MS program in biology and expects to graduate with a 3.74 GPA for his undergraduate studies, and a 4.0 GPA for his graduate work. In the fall, he will enter Harvard University’s PhD Program in Neuroscience.

Since 2010, he has been a research assistant in the laboratory of Professor of Biology Tadmiri R. Venkatesh. His project, which studied the roles of glia cells in neurodegeneration of the Drosophila melanogaster CNS, advanced his knowledge of genetics and neuroscience. He has also been an adjunct lecturer and recitation instructor for BIO 100 “The Strategy of Life”.

In addition, Mr. Santiago was a peer mentor with the City College Academy for Professional Preparation and served as vice president of the Biology Club. His additional honors and awards include: the Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement Scholarship (2010 – 2013); City College Academy of Professional Preparation AMS Stipend; Rebecca S. and William J. Horvath ’36 Science Award, and Olivia McKenna Award for Neurobiology (all in 2012).

Emma Schatoff, a biology major in the Macaulay Honors College at City College, expected to graduate May 31 with a 3.93 GPA. In the fall, the Astoria resident will enter the Weill Cornell/ Rockefeller/ Sloan-Kettering Tri-Institutional MD-PhD Program.

Since 2010, she has been a research assistant with Professor Venkatesh. Her current project focuses on the A-Kinase Anchoring Protein (AKAP) Rugose, which is the drosophila homologue of mammalian neurobeachin, a gene that has been identified as a candidate gene for autism spectrum disorders. In addition, she has been a research assistant at Rockefeller University and interned with the Tri-Institutional MD-PhD Program and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Off campus, she has volunteered with Mount Sinai Medical Center, SHAREing & CAREing and New York City AIDS Walk. A violinist, she has been a member of the CCNY instrument ensemble since 2009 and has worked with the City College Academy for Professional Preparation since 2011. Her additional awards and honors include: the Paul Margolin Biology Award (2011), Gloria & Myer Fishman Scholarship and Edman Beaman Scholarship (both in 2012).

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