News and Events

Learn more about upcoming events and discover the progress of IMSD scholars

Congratulations

Congratulations to IMSD scholars for their accomplishments during their PhD training

Fellowships and Grants

Photo of Akinsola Oyelakin.

Akinsola Oyelakin, PhD student in Oral Biology

In 2019, Akinsola received a NIH F31 Ruth L. Kirschstein Predoctoral Individual National Research Service Award from the National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). This award provides predoctoral individuals with supervised research training in specified health and health-related areas leading toward the research doctoral degree. 

Akinsola is a PhD student in the oral biology program and an IMSD scholar. Akinsola’s mentor is Rose-Anne Romano, PhD.

Akinsola’s research will focus on molecular analysis of the oncogenic role of p63 in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.

Photo of Jennifer Martin.

Jennifer Martin, PhD student in Pharmacology

In 2018, Jennifer received a prestigious NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Post-doctoral Advancement in Neuroscience award. The award supports career development for outstanding graduate students who are interested in neuroscience research. This two-phase award will facilitate completion of the doctoral dissertation and transition of talented gradu-ate students to strong neuroscience research postdoctoral positions. Additionally, will pro-vide career development opportunities relevant to their long-term career goal of becoming independent neuroscience researchers will be provided.

Jennifer is a PhD student in the pharmacology and toxicology program and an IMSD scholar. Jennifer’s mentor is David Dietz, PhD.

Jennifer’s research will focus on transcriptomic changes in glial cells in the prefrontal cor-tex following heroin self-administration, an animal model of addiction, using RNA sequencing.

Also in 2018, Jennifer was accepted into the Society for Neuroscience (Sfn) - Neursocience Scholars Program. This program provides schaolars with two years of complimentary SfN membership, travel award to attend the SfN annual meeting each fall during the two-year program, up to $1,500 in enrichment funds to support allowed professional development activities, and a mentoring team consisting of a senior mentor and a member of the Diversity in Neuroscience Subcommittee. The team will discuss a fellow's research, career plans, and overall experience.

 

Photo of Anthony Jones.

Anthony Jones, PhD student in Neuroscience

In 2017, Anthony received a two-year fellowship award in pharmacology and toxicology from the PhRMA Foundation. The award supports career development activities of sci-entists and encourages multidisciplinary training to apply the perspective of molec-ular, cell and systems biology to pharmacology and toxicology research. The award provides a yearly stipend of $20,000.

Anthony is a PhD student in the neuroscience program and an IMSD scholar. His mentors are Margarita L. Dubocovich, PhD and Rajendram V. Rajnarayanan, PhD.

Anthony’s research focuses on screening for environmental compounds such as chemicals found in pesticides that can disrupt circadian rhythms, creating a higher risk for diabetes, obesity, and other metabolic disorders.

Photo of Kerri Pryce.

Kerri Pryce, PhD student in Pharmacology and Toxicology

In 2017, Kerri was accepted into the Society for Neuroscience (Sfn) - Neursocience Scholars Program. This program provides schaolars with two years of complimentary SfN membership, travel award to attend the SfN annual meeting each fall during the two-year program, up to $1,500 in enrichment funds to support allowed professional development activities, and a mentoring team consisting of a senior mentor and a member of the Diversity in Neuroscience Subcommittee. The team will discuss a fellow's research, career plans, and overall experience.

Graduation

Jessie Polanco.

Congratulations to Dr. Jessie Polanco Garcia, IMSD student who graduated in Summer 2020 with a PhD in Pharmacology and Toxicology. 

Spencer Rosario.

Congratulations to Dr. Spencer Rosario, IMSD student who graduated in Spring 2020 with a PhD in Molecular Pharmacology and Cancer Therapuetics. Spencer has accepted a postdoctoral position at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, NY!

Skyler Resendez.

Congratulations to Dr. Skyler Resendez, IMSD student who graduated in Winter 2020 with a PhD in Biological Sciences. 

Photo of Anthony Jones.

Congratulations to Dr. Anthony Jones, IMSD student who graduated in Spring 2019 with a PhD in Neuroscience. Anthony has accepted a postdoctoral position at the Univeristy at Buffalo in Buffalo, NY!

Photo of Jennifer Martin.

Congratulations to Dr. Jennifer Martin, IMSD student who graduated in Spring 2019 with a PhD in Pharmacology. Jennifer has accepted a postdoctoral position at the Universirty at Buffalo in Buffalo, NY to pursure the K00 portion of her F99/K00 award!

Photo of Lakeisha Lewter.

Congratulations to Dr. Lakeisha Lewter, IMSD student who graduated in Spring 2019 with a PhD in Neuroscience. Lakeisha has accepted a postdoctoral position at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA!

Photo of Norma Zamora.

Congratulations to Dr. Norma Zamora, IMSD student who graduated in Spring 2019 with a PhD in Pharmacology!

Photo of Emmanuel Yawson.

Congratulations to Dr. Emmanuel Yawson, IMSD student who graduated in Spring 2019 with a PhD in Pharmacology. Emmanuel has accepted a Clinical Research Associate position at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, NY!

Photo of Melisa Medina-Rivera.

Congratulations to Dr. Melisa Medina-Rivera, IMSD student who graduated in Fall 2018 with a PhD in Biochemistry.  Melisa has accepted a postdocoral fellowship in the Division of Nutrition at Cornell Univeristy in Ithaca, NY!

Photo of Amaris Borges Munoz.

Congratulations to Dr. Amaris Borges Munoz, IMSD student who graduated in Spring 2018 with a PhD in Analytical Chemistry.  Amaris has accepted a Research Investigator II postion at Bristol-Myers Squib in Boston, MA!

Photo of Kerri Pryce.

Congratulations to Dr. Kerri Pryce, IMSD student who graduated in Spring 2018 with a PhD in Pharmacology & Toxicology.  Kerri has accepted a postdoctoral position at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, New York!

Conference and Meeting Activities

Congratulations to Steven Lewis, PhD student in Pathology and Anatomical Sciences, who virutally attended the Experimental Biology 2020 in April 2020 and presented a poster titled "Seckel Syndrome and the Skull: Quantifying Characteristics". 

Congratulations to Melany Garcia, PhD student in Cancer Prevention and Control, who attended the Advancing the Science of Cancer in Latinos in San Antonio, TX in February 2020 and presented a poster titled "Addressing the Needs of the Western New York Puerto Rican Hispanic Community: The Puentes (Bridges) Study". 

Congratulations to Gloria Aidoo-Frimpong, PhD student in Community Health and Health Behavior, who attended the 23rd Annual American Association of Behavioral and Social Sciences meeting in LAs Veags, NV in February 2020 and presented an oral presentation titled "Perceptions of General Health Status among US Immigrants Based on Demographics and Socioeconomic Factors: An Analysis of the 2016 General Social Survey" and a poster titled "Integrating Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) as an HIV prevention Strategy in Sub-Saharan Africa". 

Congratulations to Steven Lewis, PhD student in Pathology and Anatomical Sciences, who attended the SPIE Medical Imaging Conference 2020 Houston, TX in February 2020 and presented a poster titled "Quantitative Evaluation of Cadaveric Contrast Agents: Identifying Anatomical Structures with BriteVu". 

Congratulations to Gloria Aidoo-Frimpong, PhD student in Community Health and Health Behavior, who attended the 2019 World AIDS Day Symposium in Rochester, NY in December 2019 and presented two posters titled "HIV/AIDS among African Immigrants in the United States (US): A Literature Review" and "HIV knowledge, Attitudes and Beliefs among African refugee women". 

Congratulations to Rasheen Powell, PhD student in Pharmacology, who attended the Society for Neuroscience 2019 meeting in Chicago, IL in October 2019 and presented a poster titled "Peripheral knockdown of endocytic protein AP2A2 ameliorates acute and chronic inflammatory pain-like behaviors in mice". This poster presentation was selected as a Hot Topic!

Congratulations to Mohamed Sharif, PhD student in Biochemistry, who attended the Annual Buffalo Conference on Microbial Pathogenesis in Buffalo, NY in May 2019 and presented a poster titled "Selective COPII vesicles mediates glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI)-dependent trafficking in the early secretory pathway of Trypanosoma brucei".

Congratulations to Skyler Resendez, PhD student in Biological Sciences, who was selected to present an oral presentation at the 1st Annual Great Lakes Evolutionary Genomics Symposium in Buffalo, NY, in May 2019. The oral presentations was titled "A new mouse model predicts the phenotypic effects of an ancient deletion polymorphism in the human growth hormone receptor gene".

Congratulations to Jerry Cartagena, PhD student in Chemistry, who was selected to present a talk at the Graduate Student Symposium (GSS) at the University at Buffalo in Buffalo, NY, in May 2019. The talk was titled "Investigating the Interactions of Carbamate Insecticides with Environmental Surfaces via Sum-Frequency Generation Spectroscopy".

Congratulations to Spencer Rosario, PhD student in Experimental Therapeutics at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, who attended and presented a poster at the Buffalo Excellence in Research Day, University at Buffalo in Buffalo, NY in April 2019. The poster presentation titled "Pan-cancer identification of metabolic dysregulation: Targeting the adaptive response" recevied a Excellence in Research, Scholarship and Creativity Award.

Congratulations to Jerry Cartagena, PhD student in Chemistry, presented a poster at the American Chemical Society (ACS) Spring 2019 National Meeting & Exposition in Orlando, FL in April 2019. The poster was titled "Interaction of Carbamate Insecticides with Silica using Surface-Selective Spectroscopy".

Congratulations to Anthony Jones, PhD student in Neuroscience, who received a Travel Award to present a poster at the ASPET Annual Meeing at Experimental Biology in April 2019. The poster was titled "Carbamate Insecticides Modulate G Protein-Dependent Signaling in Cells Expressing Melatonin Receptors".   

Congratulations to Jessie Polanco Garcia, PhD student in Neuroscience, who was selected to give an oral presentation at the Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) Annual Forum, University at Buffalo in Buffalo, NY in March 2019. The presentation was titled "6-O-Sulfation Modulates Cell-Fate Signaling in Oligodendrocyte Progenitor Cells".

Congratulations to Jennifer Martin, PhD student in Pharmacology & Toxicology who was selected to participate in the Society for Neuroscience’s Neuroscience Scholars Program. As part of this prestigious professional development program, Jennifer will attend and present a poster titled “Drebrin mediates opiate-induced behavioral and structural plasticity in the Nac” at the Society for Neuroscience 2018 meeting in San Diego, CA in November 2018.

Congratulations to Jessie Polanco Garcia, PhD student in Neursocience, for presenting a poster at the 12th Annual Society for Neuroscience Buffalo Chapter Neuroscience Research Day in Buffalo, NY in October 2018 titled "6-O-Sulfation Modulates Cell-Fate Signaling in Oligodendrocyte Progenitor Cells".

Congratulations to Lakeisha Lewter, who presented a poster at the 12th Annual Society for Neuroscience Buffalo Chapter Neuroscience Research Day in Buffalo, NY, in October 2018. The poster was titled "Discriminative stimulus effects of α2/α3-subtype selective GABAA receptor positive allosteric modulators in rats".

Congratulations to Spencer Rosario, PhD student in Experimental Therapeutics at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, who was award the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Minority Scholar in Cancer Research Professional Development Award to present a poster titled "Pan-cancer identification of metabolic dysregulation: Targeting the adaptive response” at the AACR Metabolism and Cancer Meeting in Brooklyn, NY in September 2018.

Congratulations to Jessie Polanco Garcia, PhD student in Neuroscience, for presenting a poster presentation at the 2nd Annual Stem Cells in Regenerative Medicine Symposium in Buffalo, NY in June 2018. Jessie's poster was titled "6-O-Sulfation Modulates Cell-Fate Signaling in Oligodendrocyte Progenitor Cells". Jessie's poster received an Outstanding Poster Award!

Congratulations to Melisa Medina-Rivera, a PhD student in Biochemistry who was selected to give an oral presentation entitled "Regulation of Msh2-Msh3 During DNA Metabolism" at the Buffalo DNA Repair and Replication Symposium in Buffalo, NY in June 2018.

Congratulations to Jennifer Martin, PhD student in Pharmacology & Toxicology, who received a travel award to present an oral and poster presentation at the International Behavioral Neuroscience Society Annual Meeting on "Drebrin mediates opiate-induced behavioral and structural plasticity in the Nac" in June 2018

Congratulations to Jerry Cartagena, PhD student in Chemistry who was selected to present an oral presentation at the 36th Annual Chemsitry Graduate Student Symposium on "Interaction of Carbamate Insecticides with Silica using Surface-Selective Spectroscopy" in May 2018

Congratulations to John Davis, PhD student in Molecular Pharmacology & Cancer Therapeutics at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center who received a travel award to present a poster at the RNA Society Conference on "LncRNA MEG3 Functions as a Tumor Suppressor in Prostate Cancer" in May 2018

Congratulations to Akinsola Oyelakin, PhD student in Oral Biology, who gave poster presentation at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2018 in Chicago, IL in April 2018 titled "Delineating the p63-driven oncogenic network and epigenomic signature in salivary gland tumors".

Congratulations to Steven Lewis, PhD student in Pathology & Anatomical Sciences who gave an oral presentation at the Experimental Biology Conference in April 2018.  Steven's presentation was titled "Building a Hybrid Gross Anatomy: Integration of Virtual and Cadaveric Models."

Congratulations to Lakeisha Lewter, PhD student in Neuroscience who received a travel award to present a poster at Experimental Biology Meeting in April 2018.  The poster was titled "Behavioral effects of α2/α3-subtype selective GABAA receptor positive allosteric modulators: KRM-II-81 and NS16085". She earned 1st Place Best Poster in the Behavioral Pharmacology Division Graduate Student Poster Competition for this presentation.  

Congratulations to Anthony Jones, PhD student in Pharmacology & Toxicology who presented a poster at the ASPET Annual Meeing at Experimental Biology in April 2018.  The poster was titled "Bind to a Novel Allosteric Site on hMT1 Melatonin Receptors “. He earned 3rd place in the ASPET Division of Toxicology Graduate Student Poster Competition for this presentation.  

Congratulations to Jessie Polanco, PhD student in Neuroscience, for his poster presentation at the Basal Ganglia Gordon Research Conference in Ventura, CA titled "6-O-Sulfation Modulates Cell-Fate Signaling in Oligodendrocyte Progenitor Cells in March 2018".

Congratulations to Norma Zamora, PhD student in Pharmacology & Toxicolgy who received the American Society for Neurochemistry (ASN) Young Investigator Educational Enhancement (YIEE) to present a poster entitled "Selective deletion of the L-type voltage-operated calcium channel in reactive astrocytes reduces astrocyte reactivity" at the American Society for Neurochemistry 49th Annual Meeting in Riverside, CA in March 2018.

Congratuations to Spencer Rosario, PhD student in Experimental Therapeutics at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, for attending a Gordon Research Seminar and Conference on Polyamines in Water valley, NH in June 2017 and presenting on "In silico identification of the polyamine biosynthetic pathway across cancer subtypes".

Congratlatuions to Jennifer Martin, PhD student in Pharmacology, who attended and presented a poster at the New York Pharmacology Society Chapter of ASPET meeting in Buffalo, NY, in May 2017. This poster titled "Drebrin mediates opiate-induced behavioral and structural plasticity in the NAc" recevied the Best Poster Award.

Congratulations to Kerri Pryce, PhD student in Pharmacology, who gave an oral presentation at the New York Pharmacology Society Chapter of ASPET in Buffalo, NY in May 2017. This oral presentation received the Best Oral Presentation Award.

Congratulations to Emmanuel Yawson, PhD student in Pharmacology, who attended the 2017 AACR Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, and gave a poster presentation titled "Designer peptides targeting epidermal growth factor as novel anti-breast cancer agents" in April 2017.

Congratulations to Jessie Polanco Garcia, PhD student in Neuroscience who attended the Annual Association for Clinical and Translational Science meeting for Translational Science in Washington, DC and presented "Muscarinic receptor M3R signaling prevents efficient myelin repair by human and mouse oligodendrocyte progenitor cells" in April 2017.

Congratulations to Anthony Jones, PhD student in Neuroscience, who was awarded a Travel Award to presnet a poster at the Experimental Biology 2017 in Chicago, IL in April 2017. The poster titled "Environmental Phthalate Diesters as hMT1 and hMT2 Melatonin Receptor Ligands" received a Best Poster Award.

Congratulations to Akinsola Oyelakin, PhD student in Oral Biology, for presenting an oral presentation at the 2017 AADR/CADR Annual Meeting in Los Angeles, CA in March 2017.  The oral presentation was titled "New Insights from Functional Genomics Studies of Immortalized Mouse Salivary Gland Stem Cells in Culture".

Congratulations to Jennifer Martin, PhD student in Pharmacology, who received a Travel Award to present two posters at the 2017 Behavior, Biology, and Chemistry Conference in San Antionio, TX in March 2017. The posters were titled "Activin A is increased in the nucleus accumbens following a cocaine binge" and "A novel role for Sox10 in mediating cellular and behavioral responses to heroin".

Congratulations to Spencer Rosario, PhD student in Experimental Therapeutics at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, presented at the 2017 Keystone Symposium on Tumor Metabolism in Whistler, BC, in March 2017 on "Identification of metabolic pathways deregulated in prostate cancer and the master regulators of these pathways".

Congratulations to Akinsola Oyelakin, PhD student in Oral Biology, who presented a poster at the 2017 GRC Salivary Gland & Exocrine Biology Conference in Galveston, TX in February 2017. The poster was titled "New Insights from Functional and Genomic Studies of Immortalized Mouse Salivary Gland Stem Cells in Culture".

Congratulations to Lakeisha Lewter and Jennifer Martin, PhD students in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology for their poster and oral presentations at Brain, Biology and Chemistry: Translation Research in Addiction in March 2016. 

Congratulations to Spencer Rosario, PhD student in the Department of Molecular Pharmacology & Cancer Therapeutics for her poster presentation at American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Special Conference on Chromatin and Epigenetics in Cancer in October 2015.

Congratulations to Jennifer Martin, PhD student in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, for recieving the 2015 NIDA Diversity Scholar Travel Award to participate in the Annual Society for Neuroscience (SfN) Meeting on October 17-21, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois.

Congratulations to Melisa Medina-Rivera, PhD student in the Department of Biochemistry, for her poster presentation at Chromosome Dynamics Gordon Conference in June 2015.

Congratulations to Amaris Borges Muñoz, PhD student in the Department of Chemistry, for her oral presentation at The Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy  (PITTCON) in March 2015.

Congratulations to Kerri Pryce and Anthony Jones, PhD students in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, for their poster presentations at ASPET annual meeting at Experimental Biology in March 2015

Past Student Events

DiversiTea

The Institute for the Strategic Enhancement of Educational Diversity (iSEED) recently sponsored a welcome-back event and professional development discussion forum on January 30, 2015. The event was a great success! We garnered insightful comments for the improvement of our programs. Thank you to all who attended the event.

Faculty Development Workshop

Dr. Frank Bayliss Visit to UB

Frank Bayliss Workshop.

IMSD in collaboration with Office of Inclusion and Cultural Enhancment, the Institute for Strategic Enahcnement of Educationl Diversity (iSEED) and the Gradaute School welcomed Dr. Frank Bayliss, PhD for two workshops titled "Attracting and Training STEM Graduate Students from Underrepresented Groups." Dr. Frank Bayliss, Professor of Biology and Director of the Student Enrichment Opportunities Office in the College of Science & Engineering at San Franciso State University, provided an engaging discussion on gradaute students admissions.

Dr. Anne M. Etgen Visit to UB

Faculty Development Flier.

iSEED in collaboration with the Office of Inclusion and Cultural Enhancement, the initiative for Maximizing Student Development (IMSD) and the Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs were proud to welcome Dr. Anne M. Etgen, PhD a day-long workshop titled “Attracting and Developing Excellent Faculty.” Anne M. Etgen, Professor Emerita at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, is the co-chair of the Professional Development Committee and chair of the Diversity in Neuroscience Subcommittee for the Society for Neuroscience.  The workshop included discussions on strategies for attracting excellent faculty and creating an environment where faculty thrives as well as strategies to enhance mentoring at all levels.  The workshop was held on October 28, 2014  and was attended by 51 faculty and staff from eight UB schools and 35 interdisciplinary departments.

Professional Development

Individualized Development Plan (IDP) Workshop

IDP Workshop Flier.

The National Institute of Health (NIH) is  requiring all graduate and postdoctoral researchers to provide a description of their Individual Development Plans  (IPDs)  in annual progress reports for any NIH grant in which the student is funded. CLIMB Education Advisor Dr. Graham Pumphrey, will be providing IDP workshops to provide students with assistance in developing this career plan.