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Over the summer, UAB Honors College students were able to pursue their passions and focus their effort on their own pivotal research through the 2022 Honors College Presidential Honors Fellowship (PHF) program. Each year, the PHF program provides a selected group of honors students an opportunity to work with mentors on varied topics of their choice, which allows them to pursue research related to their major or explore other interests. This year’s PHF awardees included 27 students who used the program to expand their engagement in the community and prepare their research for future academic and professional activities. 2022 Honors College Presidential Honors Fellowship participants2022 Honors College Presidential Honors Fellowship participants

“The Honors College PHF allowed me to pursue my research interests this past summer,” said Shrey Pradeep, a PHF participant and junior majoring in neuroscience. “The PHF also enriched my summer through the weekly workshops that helped me learn about skills to succeed in the future no matter what career route I choose. I am very thankful for this opportunity and my summer would not have been the same without the PHF.”

Each PHF recipient was awarded a stipend of $2,500 to provide support during the summer months.  Students dedicated at least 20 hours a week over an eight-week period from May to July, and worked individually with a UAB faculty mentor for the duration of the project. The PHF program also enabled students to develop hands-on research skills and abilities through eight professional development workshops presented by the UAB Honors College. The workshops conducted by UAB faculty to enhance the PHF experience for student-researchers included Mindfulness and More; Mental Health Support and Self-Care for Students; Yes, You Are Good Enough to Apply for Fellowships; Breaking Down Your Project! You’re Studying What?; Money Management for Students; Optimizing Your Study Strategies; Posters! How to Actually Make Them!; and Interview Skills: Telling Your Story.

At the conclusion of the fellowship, a celebratory breakfast was held in honor of the students and their mentors. The formal program included remarks from Shannon L. Blanton, Ph.D., dean of the UAB Honors College; Mark Bevensee, Ph.D., assistant dean of the Honors College; and Pam Benoit, Ph.D., senior vice president of Academic Affairs and provost. Students also presented their research projects during the breakfast program, which helped them gain insight from fellow students, faculty, and staff.

“The Presidential Honors Fellowship provided a unique opportunity to participate in practical and engaging workshops that bolstered my research and professional development," said Anantha Korrapati, a PHF participant and senior majoring in neuroscience, while pursuing a master of public health. "I thoroughly enjoyed working alongside other honors students and learning about the unique and dynamic projects that are conducted here at UAB. Creating an independent project proposal and overseeing it this summer taught me skills that are applicable to any future endeavors, and I am thankful for the mentorship of the Honors College as well as the various speakers from the workshops throughout the whole process. Witnessing the fruition of our work at the UAB Summer Expo was a gratifying experience, and I personally came out of the experience with a stronger understanding of experiential learning and autonomy in research.”

Shrey PradeepShrey Pradeep at the 2022 UAB Summer Expo - “The Use of Sodium Nitrite (NaNO2) as a Therapeutic to Increase the Functional Recovery of the Lower Urinary Tract After Spinal Cord Injury”As one of the requirements of the PHF program, students present their fellowship research at the UAB Summer Expo. Six PHF students placed as winners in their respective conference categories, further highlighting the significance of their research and creative activity. 

2022 Honors College Presidential Summer Fellowships recipients:

Muhammad Ali Abdullah “Quantification of BOLD fMRI Response to Variable Pressure Stimulation on Fingers”

Olivia Faith Blanton* “Evaluating the Psychosocial Behaviors of Students in Grades 9-12 at the Magic City Acceptance Academy in Comparison to State and National Responses of Similar Surveys”

Jacob Landon Frazier “Rain of Fire: Novel Draft”

Sofia De Los Santos Gallegos “RANK Ligand and Its Interactive Pathways in Breast Cancer”

Gabe Charles Green “Determining the Mechanisms of MET and the Organs that Undergo this Process”

Anantha Akshitha Korrapati “Heavy Metals Induce Senescence in Dopaminergic Neuronal Tissue”

Snigdha Kosuri* “Autonomic Control of the Nervous System on Heart Rate Variability”

Britney Vy Le “Operation Wipeout Cervical Cancer in Alabama Film” (biology lead)

Hyoeun Lim “Impact of PCG1 Availability on Skeletal Muscle Stem and Progenitor Cells (MPCs) Cell State and Nutrient Metabolism” 

Reece Dillen Long “Identification of Plant-Growth Promoting Endophytes in Duckweed”

Lucas Andrew Lowe “Functional Analysis of Trikafta-Refractory CFTR Mutation”

Karim Fady Mikhail* “Analysis of BIN1-Mediated LVGCC Surface Localization and Resulting Calcium Influx in Inhibitory Neurons”

Nikhita Sainaga Mudium “Analyzing Neuroglial and Immune Cell Pathology of the Corynebacterium amycolatum Microbiome in Parkinson’s Disease”

Craig Robert Peters “Role of the Let-7/Lin-41 Heterochronic Pathway in Neuronal Maturation in C. elegans”

Shrey Pradeep “The Use of Sodium Nitrite (NaNO2) as a Therapeutic to Increase the Functional Recovery of the Lower Urinary Tract After Spinal Cord Injury” 

Brayden Wesley Rohr “Does p53 Induce Non-Transcriptional Quiescence in Saccharomyces cerevisiae?”

Ayona Roychowdhury “Development of Platform for Expression of Recombinant Rhesus Monoclonal Antibodies Against Human Immunodeficiency Virus as Pentameric IgM;”

“Do Circadian Rhythms Mediate Monosodium Urate Crystal-Induced Response of Monocytes?”

Justin Ryu “GABAergic Interneuron Diversity in the Dentate Gyrus”Anantha KorrapatiAnantha Korrapati at the 2022 UAB Summer Expo - “Heavy Metals Induce Senescence in Dopaminergic Neuronal Tissue”

Kafui Sakyi-Addo “Creating a Middle-Grade Novel”

Ritika Rajeev Samant* “‘What’s That Smell’: A Children’s Book Highlighting a Common Children-of-Immigrants Experience”

Veronica Markayla Sanders “PI3K and Autophagy Inhibitor Efficacy in VMA21 Animal”

Emma Claire Sautman “Investigation of the Role of Vitamin D Receptor in Post-Embryonic Neuronal Maturation”

Victoria Rose-Marie Sutton “Operation Wipeout Cervical Cancer in Alabama Film” (audio, musical, and technical lead)

Aniketh Sai Tadepalli* “Determining the Functions of Granulin Domains in Neurons”

James Colten Walts* “The Impact of Exercise on Metabolite Levels in Drosophila melanogaster”

Anna Marie Yun Wilson “Recaptivating the Exercise-Associated Upregulation of Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis in a Mouse Model of Alzheimer’s Disease”

* denotes PHF student winners who placed in the 2022 UAB Summer Expo

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