CCNY undergrads triumph at annual national STEM conference

Maintaining The City College of New York’s excellence at the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minoritized Scientists (ABRCMS), four CCNY undergraduates majoring in biomedical science emerged winners at the 2023 event in Phoenix, Arizona. The conference attracted more than 5,000 participants – including graduate students, researchers and scientists – in what was ABRCMS’s largest gathering in its 23-year history. 

All four CCNY winners participated in the City College of New York- Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (CCNY-MSKCC) Partnership’s PURT program in the summer. PURT (Partnership Undergraduate Research Training) is headed by Karen Hubbard and Bao Vuong, both faculty in the biology department.

Following are details about the triumphant ABRCMS quartet, their subject matter and project titles:

  • Ginika Agwu, senior; physiology and pharmacology, “Effects of Systemic Anticancer Treatment on Determinants of Cardiorespiratory Fitness: A Systematic Review “;
  • Cayla Cruz, senior; social and behavioral sciences, “Geospatial Analysis Identifying Hot-Spots of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Associated with Air Pollution in the Northeast US”: 
  • Steven Shafeek,  sophomore; social and behavioral Sciences, “Improving Access to Clinical Trials and Adherence to Cancer Care in Underserved Patients with Central Nervous System Tumors”;  and
  • Amy Thomas, junior; social and behavioral sciences, “Enhancing Knowledge in Clinical Ethics: An Evaluation of MSK’s Bioethics Ambassador Program (BAP).”   

ABRCMS is one of the largest, professional conferences for underrepresented minority students to pursue advanced professional development skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. At the event, students are given the opportunity to present their research, explore graduate schools, and network with other students and researchers to expand their connections and opportunities. Recipient of the 2019 AIMBE Excellence in STEM Education Award, ABRCMS has been the go-to conference for historically excluded community college, undergraduate and postbaccalaureate students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. 

About The City College of New York
Since 1847, The City College of New York has provided a high-quality and affordable education to generations of New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines. CCNY embraces its position at the forefront of social change. It is ranked #1 by the Harvard-based Opportunity Insights out of 369 selective public colleges in the United States on the overall mobility index. This measure reflects both access and outcomes, representing the likelihood that a student at CCNY can move up two or more income quintiles. Education research organization Degree Choices ranks CCNY #1 nationally among universities for economic return on investment. In addition, the Center for World University Rankings places CCNY in the top 1.8% of universities worldwide in terms of academic excellence. Labor analytics firm Emsi (now Lightcast) puts at $1.9 billion CCNY’s annual economic impact on the regional economy (5 boroughs and 5 adjacent counties) and quantifies the “for dollar” return on investment to students, taxpayers and society. At City College, more than 15,000 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in eight schools and divisions, driven by significant funded research, creativity and scholarship. This year, CCNY launched its most expansive fundraising campaign, ever. The campaign, titled “Doing Remarkable Things Together” seeks to bring the College’s Foundation to more than $1 billion in total assets in support of the College mission. CCNY is as diverse, dynamic and visionary as New York City itself. View CCNY Media Kit.

Jay Mwamba
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