Graduate School News

Discoveries: The sweet science behind mending muscle

IMG 0174Rylie Hightower, a third-year graduate student in the Graduate Biomedial Sciences neuroscience program, studies proteins and other factors that contribute to the progression of muscular dystrophy. 

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Link to Leadership: Dr. Lisa Schwiebert, Associate Dean for Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs

GRAD logo without taglineEmbarking on the graduate school journey can be a challenging experience, but it helps if you understand the major players involved in that experience. This new series, "Link to Leadership," features Q&As with UAB's Graduate School leaders and an opportunity for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to get to know these leaders on a deeper level.
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Graduate Student Organization Spotlight: Graduate Student Government

Grad Student Organization Spotlight graphicThe University of Alabama at Birmingham offers numerous ways for graduate students to enhance their leadership skills, one of which is joining a student organization. But how do you decide which organization is the right fit for you? This Spotlight series will highlight all of UAB's graduate student organizations, as well as the benefits of joining each one.  Read more ...

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Blazer Spotlights

Hisham Abdelmotilib

Hisham Abdelmotilib

Jacqueline Vo

Jacqueline Vo

Kendra Royston

Kendra Royston

Samir Rana

Samir Rana

Saman Khaled is a doctoral student in the department of pathology. Since coming to UAB in 2004, she has been researching immune cell adhesion in response to heavy ions (galactic cosmic radiation), gamma radiation, and combined cytokine stimulus. Saman chose to come to UAB because “UAB has an outstanding reputation as the place to research biomedical sciences, and it was right in my backyard.”

Saman has had an interesting summer. She was one of 15 students selected internationally to attend the NASA Space Radiation Summer School. When asked what has been her most rewarding experience at UAB she replied, “Hmm... Probably getting to go to Brookhaven National Laboratories to work with a powerful particle accelerator beam which recreates space radiation.” She believes her greatest influence to be her mentor, Dr. Dennis Kucik. “If it wasn't for him I wouldn't be working with NASA right now. Dr. Kucik's advice has kept me on track. The Kucik lab feels like home to me now and every person in it has taught me how to be a better scientist.”

Saman encourages other graduate students to persevere. “Experiments fail, research may lead to no where, and you may literally spend a year perfecting a technique that you never actually use...Through it all, don't give up. Make sure to get as much guidance from your lab colleagues as well as your mentor, and try not to beat yourself up too badly when everything seems to be going down the tubes. One day a light breaks through the clouds and everything will come together (usually this happens in your 5th year, I hear).”

Saman’s plans after graduating include applying for postdoctoral positions in radiobiology at Lawrence Berkeley or Johnson Space Center. When asked what the future holds for her she replied, “I'm not sure exactly. I definitely would like my experiments to go on the next shuttle, but really I live for the present.”