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Dodge City Daily Globe - Dodge City, KS
  • Locals make early strides in cancer research

  • When it comes to pursuing their dreams, a pair of Dodge City natives are getting a head start, thanks to a grant from their academic institution.Jenny Barriga and Nallely Barron-Garcia, both of Dodge City, are among 51 Kansas State University (KSU) undergrads to receive awards from the university's Johnson Cancer Rese...
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  • When it comes to pursuing their dreams, a pair of Dodge City natives are getting a head start, thanks to a grant from their academic institution. Jenny Barriga and Nallely Barron-Garcia, both of Dodge City, are among 51 Kansas State University (KSU) undergrads to receive awards from the university's Johnson Cancer Research Center. The $1,000 awards can be used for cancer research projects. The award program encourages early participation in lab research as well as the consideration of a career in cancer research while students are still deciding what they want to pursue. “We are enlisting a new generation of cancer researchers and medical workers, and helping train them to do scientific research,” said Rob Denell, center director and distinguished professor of biology in a news release. “These are outstanding students working closely with faculty on real research projects, and some, as we've seen in the past, will undoubtedly go on to be top scientists and physicians,” he added. In applying for the award, students co-wrote research proposals with faculty mentors affiliated with the center. In the spring, those who received the award conducted their research in their mentors' laboratories. Barriga, a senior at KSU, is pursuing a degree in chemistry and biochemistry. She said she is pursuing her degree because she is interested in studying biological systems at a molecular level. She said she first became interested in cancer research while doing an internship at Dodge City Community College. “I'm really appreciative of it,” Barriga said of the award. “… It's nice to know that there's support from the community and it's nice to be a part of cancer research and have people support what you're doing.” After graduating, Barriga plans to undertake a post-baccalaureate position at the National Cancer Institute. She plans to pursue her Ph.D. and continue doing research. Those who received the award will be recognized at a spring banquet. The university's cancer research center also provides other undergraduate scholarships as well as support for graduate students and faculty training and research. All such programs are funded through private gifts. More information on the center is available at http://cancer.k-state.edu or by calling 785-532-6705.

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