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Students Showcase Research at Annual “Summer Explore” Event

Summer Explore Symposium

Summer Explore Symposium

The Inquiry “Summer Explore” Symposium convened on Nov. 30, 2020 in its virtual symposium.  The Summer Explore Symposium is hosted by the Inquiry Curriculum, and supports medical students who have a deep interest in various domains of research and scholarship and participate in in-depth research projects during the summer. 

Learners are comprised of the second year class work who work diligently over the summer to complete their research projects. Summer Explore is unique among summer programs in that mentors work to cultivate learners longitudinally throughout their careers by providing mentorship and training even after the summer projects have completed. 

Traditionally held in person, this year’s symposium had to be held virtually during the pandemic, but the value of the scholarship was still apparent.

“Today, you'll hear from some of the very best of these learners, although all the projects were excellent,” said Rita Redberg, MD, Director of the Inquiry Program during the event. Research projects featured during the symposium ranged from analyzing CRISPR to help treat cancer to reducing injuries in basketball athletes.

Watch the full event here:

Unlike traditional medical school content, Inquiry Curriculum teaches a “habit of mind.” Each step of the four-year curriculum advances the learner, first to a sophisticated consumer of biomedical science, and then to a producer of new knowledge.

Posters presented during the symposium can be found here.

Dean’s Prize Winners

Dean’s Prizes are awarded twice annually to medical students who demonstrate outstanding scholarship and research during Summer Explore and long-term research terms. Finalists are selected based upon the submission of a one-page abstract, letter of nomination, and successful presentation to the faculty review committee. 

Gunvant Chaudhari
Mentor: Jae Ho Sohn, MD, MS
“A Clinical Language Search Algorithm for the American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria”

Prisca Diala
Mentor: Craig Cohen, MD, MPH
“Barriers and Facilitators to Integrating Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Programs in Outpatient Clinics in Western Kenya”

Kasey Han
Mentor: Doris Wang, MD, PhD
“iMRI-guided DBS is superior to traditional awake DBS in targeting accuracy and clinical outcomes in patients with Parkinson’s Disease”

Joy Jin
Mentor: Alexander Marson, MD, PhD
“Analyzing the effects of therapeutic gene knock-in using CRISPR in human T cells for cancer treatment”

Matthew Orringer
Mentor: Nirav Pandya, MD
“Acutely Increased Workloadis Highly Correlated with Significant Injuries Among National Basketball Association (NBA) Players”

Hannah Sans
Mentor: Michael Wilson, MD
“Detection of TB Meningitis using Multiplex PCR Enrichment followed by Next-Generation Sequencing”

Hope Schwartz
Mentor: Tasce Bongiovanni, MD, MPP
“Disparities in Trauma Pain Assessment: Are We Under-Assessing Patients with Limited English Proficiency?”

Mark Taylor 
Mentor: Allan Balmain, PhD
“Network-level gene expression reveals cryptic oncogenic paths through single-cell developmental landscapes”

Dean’s Prize Finalists and Honorable Mentions

  • James Cevallos (Finalist)
  • Jonathan Chu (Finalist)
  • Rebecca Chen and Janette Tang (Finalists)
  • Angela Lu (Finalist)
  • Nikan Namiri (Finalist)
  • Zer Keen Chia (Honorable Mention)
  • Gurbani Kaur (Honorable Mention)
  • Rex Lee (Honorable Mention)
  • Elizabeth Schrier (Honorable Mention)

Mentor Award Recipients

Nisha Acharya, MD 
Mentee: Aheli Chattopadhyay & Angela Lu

Riham Alwan, MD, MPH
Mentee: Dahlia Kaki

Jennifer Cocohoba, PharmD
Mentee: Marycon Jiro

Michael Duke, PhD
Mentee: Deborah Yip & Ali Zahir

Jason Nagata, MD
Mentee: Jonathan Chu