The University of Kentucky Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) is honored to announce that 20 undergraduates have been selected for the 2023 Commonwealth Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) Fellowship program.
Sponsored by OUR and the Office of the Vice President for Research, the CURE Fellowship program empowers undergraduates to become leaders for their respective communities by providing opportunities to develop new knowledge and skills through research within six of UK’s Research Priority Areas: cancer, cardiovascular health, diversity and inclusion, energy, neuroscience and substance use disorder.
“As an undergraduate student with plans to further my education through graduate studies, participating in opportunities that strengthen my research skills and interdisciplinary thinking is key. The time and space the CURE Fellowship provides will allow me to immerse myself in scholarly architectural research for the first time beyond core curricular requirements,” said Mariana Mesa Castillo, a junior architecture major who is working with mentor Leen Katrib in the College of Design’s School of Architecture. “Collaborating with Professor Katrib will provide me with much-needed exposure into the intersection of race and architecture — an area of research that is notably missing from the current curricular structure at the School of Architecture.”
Students selected as CURE Fellows received a $5,000 stipend to support their research endeavors during the Summer 2023 term. Fellows will engage in a research project under the guidance of a mentor associated with one of the participating RPAs. Students will interact with the other fellows in their cohort during the summer research period and present their research at the Summer Research Symposium on Aug. 31, 2023.
UK's 2023 recipients of the CURE Fellowship are:
Cancer Research Priority Area
- Breanna Pane, junior biochemistry and neuroscience major; Mentor: Eddy Yang, PhD, in the College of Medicine’s Department of Radiation
- Harrison Yang, junior biology major; Mentor: Fanny Chapelin, PhD, in the College of Engineering’s Department of Biomedical Engineering
Cardiovascular Research Priority Area
- Elizabeth Elliott, sophomore Honors chemistry major; Mentor: Robin Cooper, PhD, in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Biology
- Abraham Alhamdani, junior Honors neuroscience major; Mentor: Tammy Stephenson, PhD in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment’s Department of Dietetics and Human Nutrition
UNited in True racial Equality (UNITE) Research Priority Area
- Leena Haider, junior Honors biology major; Mentor: Kirby Mayer, PhD, in the College of Health Sciences’ Department of Physical Therapy
- Mariana Mesa Castillo, junior architecture major; Mentor: Leen Katrib, in the College of Design’s School of Architecture
- Kacie Peters, junior Honors psychology major; Mentor: Christia Brown, PhD, in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Psychology
- Daniela Rodriguez Soto, sophomore management and marketing major; Mentor: Kimberly Parker, PhD, in the College of Communication and Information’s Department of Integrated Strategic Communication
Energy Research Priority Area
- Khamil Allen Thomas, freshman computer engineering major; Mentor: Chad Risko, PhD, in the College of Arts and Sciences’ department of Chemistry
Neuroscience Research Priority Area
- Kyle Dahlgren, sophomore psychology major; Mentor: Thomas Adams, PhD, in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Psychology
- Hannah Miller, sophomore Honors biology major; Mentor: Brad Hubbard, PhD, in the College of Medicine’s Department of Physiology
- Neo Nathoo, sophomore neuroscience major; Mentor: Patrick Sullivan, PhD, in the College of Medicine’s Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center
- Elizabeth Rice, sophomore agricultural and medical biotechnology major; Mentor: Luke Bradley, PhD, in the College of Medicine’s Department of Neuroscience
- Avanti Sawardekar, sophomore Honors biomedical engineering major; Mentor: Salvatore Cherra, PhD, in the College of Medicine’s Department of Neuroscience
Substance Use Research Priority Area (SUPRA)
- Joseph Elsoueidi, sophomore biology major; Mentor: Jill Turner, PhD, in the College of Pharmacy’s Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
- Rachel Gressick, junior public health major; Mentor: Carrie Oser, PhD, in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Sociology
- Jocelyn Martin, junior Honors neuroscience and psychology major; Mentor: Michael Bardo, PhD, in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Psychology
- Caden Maynard, senior psychology major; Mentor: Peggy Keller, PhD, in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Psychology
- Safiyah Sadek, junior neuroscience major; Mentor: Cassandra Gipson-Reichardt, PhD, in the College of Medicine’s Department of Pharmacology and Nutritional Sciences
One recipient chose to remain anonymous.