H.S. Research Program Celebrates 16 Years

The annual High School Summer Enrichment program at ACPHS wrapped up its 16th year of providing research opportunities for Capital Region students interested in science and medicine. This year marked a special milestone as the program welcomed the 100th student in its history.

The students selected for the program spend six weeks working with ACPHS faculty researchers. Each researcher is teamed up with two students, who are recommended for the program by their guidance counselors. A photo of this year's students and mentors is included here.

“The students we enroll in the program have enjoyed and done well in their high school chemistry and biology courses,” says David Clarke, Ph.D., an associate professor of chemistry, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, and advisor to the program. “Most of them are interested in pursuing careers in the health or medical fields, but don’t yet know about many of the options available to them.”

As part of their applications, all students must provide transcripts, PSAT scores, essays about their career goals, and what they hope to get from the program, he says.

The projects the students are assigned depend on the faculty member and his/her research interests. Most projects involve gathering data, but the students also learn other important skills such as collaboration.

In addition to their lab research, the students tour area hospitals and pharmaceutical companies, which this year included visits to Albany Medical Center, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, and St. Peter's Hospital.

The tours are designed to help the students learn how the scientific community works together to understand disease and to develop treatments, says Dr. Clarke.