Tufts Celebrates Scientific Achievements of Massachusetts High School Students

TAHSS Student Practicum

Medical student Jordan Talan shows Bethsaida Louis and John Frazer how to use a stethoscope.

Summer Program Encourages Multicultural Students to Pursue Careers in Medicine and Science

BOSTON (August 9, 2013) — Tufts University School of Medicine today celebrated the achievements of 27 Massachusetts high school students who participated in the school’s 2013 Teachers and High School Student Program. The program is one of Tufts’ signature initiatives to encourage high school students with diverse backgrounds to explore their interest in medicine and biomedical sciences. Established in 1989, the Tufts program supports the careers of aspiring young doctors, health professionals and scientists by engaging them in a range of research and clinical opportunities. 

“Tufts University School of Medicine is committed to nurturing scientific curiosity among young people of diverse backgrounds, particularly those from communities that are traditionally underrepresented in medicine and the health sciences,” said Harris Berman, M.D., dean of Tufts University School of Medicine. “The smart, talented students who came to Tufts this summer have contributed meaningfully to our health sciences community, and we hope our program has further cultivated their interest in pursuing careers as health professionals.” 

“Through this initiative, Tufts offers valuable, hands-on experience to young people who might not otherwise have opportunities to explore their early interests in medicine and the biomedical sciences,” said Joyce Sackey, M.D., dean for multicultural affairs and global health and associate professor at Tufts University School of Medicine. “This program, celebrating its 25th year, is one of Tufts’ key initiatives to support the educational development of youth in our community.”

Students who participated in the seven-week program spent up to 25 hours each week in various clinical and research positions affiliated with Tufts University.  Institutions hosting the students were Tufts University School of Medicine, Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences at Tufts, Tufts Medical Center, St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center, Baystate Medical Center, and Good Samaritan Medical Center.  

Students also took a gross anatomy course taught by Tufts medical students and gained knowledge of laboratory-based science; in the process, students developed relationships with medical and graduate student mentors that Tufts expects will continue beyond the summer program.

The Tufts program also includes an independent study, the findings of which the students presented to the Tufts community, family and friends today.  Participating students include:

  • Anab Aden (Dorchester), 17, City on a Hill Charter Public School
    “Child nutrition of Somali children in Boston”
  • Edward Akubude (Mattapan), 17, Concord-Carlisle Regional High School
    “The effectiveness of suramine on stopping the release of parts of mast cells”
  • Sesen Aron (Tewksbury), 17, Tewksbury Memorial High School
    “Child care settings and development”
  • Jala Chery (Roslindale), 16, Boston Latin Academy
    “Child care settings and development”
  • John Frazer (Quincy), 17, Boston College High School
    “Diabetes & periodontal disease: The importance of blood glucose testing in the dental setting”
  • Bryant Gill (Foxborough), 18, Xaverian Brothers High School
    “The morphology of astrocytes in wild type v fragile x knockout mice”
  • Nathan Gill (Foxborough), 16, Xaverian Brothers High School
    "OCD in mice and the effects of certain drugs on marble burying catalepsy and stress”
  • LiPing He (Quincy), 17, Quincy High School
    “ADHD in school aged children”
  • Machcuong “David” Ho (Springfield), 16, Springfield Central High School
    “What is abnormal behavior?”
  • Michael Huang (Springfield), 16, Springfield Central High School
    “Treatment options and current research in Alzheimer's Disease”
  • Andrew Iacoviello (Norfolk), 18, Xaverian Brothers High School
    "Developing zebrafish with craniofacial defects for further study”
  • Sandy Li (Boston), 17, Buckingham Browne & Nichols School
    “Holistic general pediatrics”
  • Lidzt Lubin (West Roxbury), 17, City on a Hill Charter Public School
    “Diabetes & periodontal disease: The importance of blood glucose testing in the dental setting”
  • Bethsaida Louis (Boston), 18, Fenway High School
    “Diabetes & periodontal disease: The importance of blood glucose testing in the dental setting”
  • Yi Qi Lu (Malden), 17, Malden High School
    “Research project designs used by health professionals”
  • Jessica Mar (Brighton), 17, Boston Latin School
    “Organizing outreach for wellness groups”
  • Bryan Martinez (East Boston), 17, Snowden International School
    “Diabetes & periodontal disease: The importance of blood glucose testing in the dental setting”
  • Ogochukwu Nwodoh (Bedford), 17 Bedford High School
    "Integration of Social & ‘Hard’ Science of HIV”
  • Blessing Ojini (Roxbury), 16, Needham High School
    "ADHD in school aged children”
  • Heather Orlowski (Springfield), 17, Springfield Central High School
    “Thoracic and abdominal aneurysms”
  • Olga Pou-Felix (Wrentham), 16, Masters Regional Academy
    “Diabetes & periodontal disease: The importance of blood glucose testing in the dental setting”
  • Klarissa Ramkissoon (Milton), 18, Milton High School
    “Understanding the basics of urogynecology”
  • Elizabeth Reid (Newton), 17, Newton North High School
    “HIV/AIDS & youth awareness”
  • Kerwyn Spears (Brockton), 17, Brockton High School
    “Infection prevention when using medical devices”
  • Sarah Wang (Chinatown, Boston), 16, Boston Latin School
    “Lean healthcare”
  • Barrett Wolfson (Acton), 17, Acton-Boxborough Regional High School
    “OCD in mice and the effects of certain drugs on marble burying catalepsy and stress”

The Teachers and High School Students Program is one of a number of “pipeline” programs at Tufts University School of Medicine designed to engage diverse students interested in the fields of medicine and biomedical sciences. Tufts offers programs for students in middle school, high school, and college, as well as college graduates.

About Tufts University School of Medicine and the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences

Tufts University School of Medicine and the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences at Tufts University are international leaders in innovative medical education and advanced research. The School of Medicine and the Sackler School are renowned for excellence in education in general medicine, biomedical sciences, special combined degree programs in business, health management, public health, bioengineering and international relations, as well as basic and clinical research at the cellular and molecular level. Ranked among the top in the nation, the School of Medicine is affiliated with six major teaching hospitals and more than 30 health care facilities. Tufts University School of Medicine and the Sackler School undertake research that is consistently rated among the highest in the nation for its effect on the advancement of medical science.

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