May 2, 2013 | Baruch College
NEW YORK, NY – May 2, 2013 – Baruch College student Irina Mironova and Baruch graduate Christopher Lopez have been awarded the Jonas E. Salk Scholarship, in support of their studies in the natural sciences.
The Jonas E. Salk Scholarships were created by the Board of Estimate of the City of New York in 1955 to honor the City College graduate who developed the first anti-polio vaccine. They are awarded annually to eight graduates of the senior colleges of The City University of New York who have demonstrated sound character, outstanding scholarship and the promise of significant contribution to medical research. The scholarship winners receive a total of $8,000 ($2,000 per year for four-year medical schools) to help defray the expenses of study for the M.D., Ph.D. or D.Sc in Biomedical Sciences or D.O. degree.
Irina Mironova, born and raised in Russia in the small town near the Black Sea, immigrated to the United States eight years ago and has been living in New York City ever since.
Irina, who is graduating in May with a major in Biology and a minor in Spanish, said she first decided to attend Baruch to study business, but changed her mind after completing her first science class taught by Dr. Emil Gernert a professor in the Natural Sciences Department.
“I switched my major to Biology and joined the small but incredibly welcoming and supportive science community at Baruch,” she said. “Because of the small class sizes, I developed close ties with all of my professors, all of whom reinforced my desire to study science and medicine. I’m very grateful to Baruch for the opportunity to explore my potential and succeed at achieving my goals.”
Irina has been accepted to the Penn State at Hershey College of Medicine, where she is planning to pursue a medical degree and explore medical research in the fields of human physiology and biochemistry.
Christopher Lopez, from Great Neck, graduated from Baruch in May 2012. He double majored in Biology/Chemistry (ad hoc) alongside English Literature. Christopher graduated with honors in English literature and submitted his honor thesis titled, “Medicine and Disease as Metaphors in Shakespeare.”
His thesis tied for first place in 2012 for the Kanner Award for outstanding thesis, and it was also the research project that he submitted for the Jonas Salk Scholarship. Christopher said he is grateful for the help he received from Baruch English professor Dr. Paula Berggren and science professor Dr. Emil Gernert, Dr. Ramzi Khuri, and Dr. John Wahlert, who helped him develop his passion for scientific research alongside his interest for English literature.
“I’m confident that I will be a far better physician and problem-solver thanks to what I’ve learned [majoring in] English literature and Chemistry,” he said. “I’m extremely grateful for my time at Baruch.”
Since graduating from Baruch, Christopher has been working as an adjunct lab instructor for biology at Baruch and tutoring students for the MCAT (the standardized test required for entrance to medical school) through Kaplan Test Prep. In August, Christopher will be attending medical school at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City.
About Baruch College:
Baruch College is a senior college in the City University of New York (CUNY) with a total enrollment of more than 17,000 students, who represent 160 countries and speak more than 100 languages. Ranked among the top 15% of U.S. colleges and the No. 5 public regional university, Baruch College is regularly recognized as among the most ethnically diverse colleges in the country. As a public institution with a tradition of academic excellence, Baruch College offers accessibility and opportunity for students from every corner of New York City and from around the world. For more about Baruch College, go to http://www.baruch.cuny.edu/.
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