CSTEP Students Earn First Place, Honorable Mention at Statewide Research Conference

Biology students with CSTEP award

Three SUNY Old Westbury Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program students returned from a statewide conference this month with some extra hardware! Biological Sciences majors Maryam Farooq, Reekarl Pierre, and Fabiola Pacheco-Valencia each earned honors at the 27th Annual CSTEP Statewide Conference, which took place in Bolton Landing, N.Y., and was attended by more than 600 CSTEP students and staff from colleges and universities across New York. 

  • Seniors Farooq and Pierre won first place in the "Cell/Micro/Molecular Biology & Virology I" category for their poster titled “Investigating the neuroprotective effect of Taurine for the treatment of Alzheimer’s." Both students were mentored by Dr. Wei Zhu and Dr. Patrick Cadet from the Neuroscience Research Institute and Biological Sciences Department.
  • In the "Biological Science Category I," Pacheco-Valencia, a junior, received an Honorable Mention award for her poster titled “Oleic and palmitic acid effects on proliferation, migration and neuropeptide.” She was mentored by Dr. Kinning Poon, Biological Sciences.

Other students who attended the conference, and and presented research were Michelle Vasquez, George Cruz, Ambar Rosario, Jemima Constanza, and Gisela Gonzalez.  Felix Alonso served as the College's CSTEP Ambassador for the trip.

CSTEP is a New York State grant-funded initiative designed to foster academic excellence for under-represented or economically disadvantaged full-time college students majoring in the STEM fields or majors leading to licensed professions. The three-day conference has been carefully designed to help participants enhance their understanding of academic discipline and allows them to network with fellow CSTEP researchers, participate in professional and career development workshops, and listen to prominent speakers from various CSTEP targeted fields.