Darex Vera-Rodríguez, Odessa Goudy, and Kiara Thompson all recently attended the annual Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) National Diversity in STEM (NDiSTEM) conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico where scientists from underrepresented backgrounds in STEM meet to share scientific contributions and network with colleagues across the country.Darex, a graduate student in the Lee Lab, attended the conference as a representative for UNC’s Biological & Biomedical Sciences Program (BBSP), Office of Graduate Education (OGE), and the Molecular and Cellular Biophysics Program (MCBP). The entire UNC booth met with prospective graduate students and postdoctoral fellows from different fields who showed strong interest in joining our UNC community. It was Darex’s first time attending a conference as a recruiter and to do it in his hometown was particularly rewarding. Darex mentioned that he was “grateful for this opportunity and I hope we keep supporting attendance to these conferences in the future to keep increasing diversity in science.”
Odessa, a graduate student in the Kuhlman Lab, represented Rosetta Commons and the MCBP. Throughout her graduate career, Odessa has used and contributed to the Rosetta source code and has presented at multiple Rosetta conferences. She was honored to help spread the word about protein design and the upcoming Rosetta REU and RaMP programs for undergraduates and post-baccalaureates as a delegate for Rosetta.(See also the Tweet about her trip here.)
Kiara, an undergraduate student in the Chancellor’s Science Scholars Program and in the Kuhlman Lab, presented a poster at the conference and had a great time learning more about the opportunities for her future as a graduate research student.