Student Accomplishments

The Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine provides a training environment and ample opportunities to be prolific in the sciences and active in the community.  Here are just a few of our students' recent accomplishments.

Leadership Roles

  • Erin Cohn, M3, Served as a Scientific Officer for Rise Up: Northeast Ohio
  • Rupleen Kaur, Systems Biology and Bioinformatics, Served as a Scientific Officer for Rise Up: Northeast Ohio

Recent Publications

Conferences and Presentations

  • Syrena Bracey presented her work at the 2023 Keystone Symposia Conference in Snowbird, Utah. 
  • Alicia Vagnozzi presented her work at the 2022 International Society of Developmental Neuroscience meeting in Vancouver, BC. Received both travel award and best poster award.
  • Jennings Luu received the Qais Farjo Memorial Travel Grant award from the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) and presented a poster at the 2022 ARVO Annual Meeting in Denver, CO.

Research Grants and Scholarships

Twenty of our current students have been awarded F30 or F31 grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  Many more have received scholarships or fellowships from other organizations. Below is a list of those newly awarded 2023 and 2024.

  • Lucie Ahn was awarded an F30, a Futures in Neurologic Research Scholarship by AAN and a KSEA-Kusco Graduate Scholarship 
  • Katie Dominic received an AHA Fellowship
  • Razaq Durodoye was awarded an F30
  • Emily Kelmm was awarded an F30 
  • Erik Koritzinsky was awarded an F30
  • Angela Liu received a National Psoriasis Foundation Early Investigator Grant
  • Kevin Newhall was awarded an F30
  • Vanessa Salazar was awarded an F31
  • Joseph Schindler was awarded an F30

Medical School Graduation Awards 2024

MSTP students were well represented this year at the CWRU School of Medicine Graduation Awards Ceremony:

  • Graduates receiving Honors with Distinction in Research
    Alicia Vagnozzi
    Sarah Venus
  • Adam Lauko:  The Andrew J. Fishleder, MD, Leadership Award
  • Jessica Anne Scarborough:
        The Max Miller Award
        The Martin Wahl Memorial Fund Award
  • Adrian S. Gomez-Nguyen and Uriel Kim
    The Leslie T. Wester, Jr. Graduation Award
  • Alicia Vagnozzi: The Miverva and Carl Wiggers Prize in Physiology

Doctoral Excellence Awards 2024

Doctoral Excellence Awards are given for Original Scholarly Work, Significant Contribution to the Field, and Significant Service Contributions.  

  • Nicholas Venetos received the award from the Department of Biochemistry
  • Morgan McGrath Lewis received the award from the Clinical Translational Sciences Program
  • Yi Fan Chen received the award from the Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences
  • Hannah Kondolf received the award from the Department of Pathology
  • Davis Weaver received the award from Systems Biology and Bioinformatics Program

Other Awards 2023-2024

  • Sarah Barker was elected BGSO Student of the Semester.  Sarah also won a Young Investigator Award at the International Research Conference on Neurodegenerative Diseases.
  • Any Chen received the Lass Medical Student Ophthalmology Research Endowment Fund Award
  • Himanshu Dashora received the Mandell Award, Society of Nuclear Medicine & Molecular Imaging
  • Uriel Kim was featured in Crain's Cleveland 20 in their Twenties
  • Hannah Kondolf received The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Journal of Biological Chemistry/Herbert Tabor Early Career Investigator Awards. (JBC/Tabor Award)
  • Will Wulftange is an Arkiteck Ventures, Venture Fellow.
  • Walter Zhao was a Hiro Fujita Award Recipient and also received an Excellence in Mentorship Award

PhD Defenses 2023

  • James Ahad, " Sequence Design and Reconstruction Optimization for Clinical Translation of Magnetic Resonance Imaging"
  • Michaela Cooley " Nanobubble ultrasound-contrast agents as a strategy to assess tumor microenvironment characteristics and nanoparticle extravasation"
  • Michelle Cruz, " Bidirectional Communication Between T cells and Intestinal Epithelial Cell Subsets in Health and Disease"
  • Marc Ferrell,  " Metagenomic and metabolomic approaches to determine contributors to residual cardiovascular disease risk."
  • Dan Jindal successfully defended his PhD dissertation entitled "A new model for synapse pruning uncovers a role for MEGF10/Jedi-1/Draper in activity-dependent refinement during a critical period.
  • Emma Kundracik, " Needle Tip-Pore Interactions in the Pseudomonas aeruginosa Type III Secretion System Translocon"
  • Joel Sax, " Unbiased Screening Approaches Reveal Unique Sterol Biology and a Unifying Mechanism for Sterol-Driven Oligodendrocyte Formation"
  • Preethy Sridharan, " Acute inhibition of aberrant mitochondrial fission after traumatic brain injury confers lasting neuroprotection into late adulthood."
  • Davis Weaver, " Novel Approaches for Optimal Therapy Design in Drug-Resistant Populations"
  • Derek Wong, " Improving NK and T cell Immunotherapies for Hematologic Malignancies"

Match List 2023

Our MSTP students had an incredible year. The key here is not only where they went, but where they wanted to go and whether they had options. First choice was once again the rule rather than the exception. 



Internal Medicine- ABIM Research Path

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

Internal Medicine- ABIM Research Path

Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Internal Medicine- Research

New York Presbyterian Hospital - Weill Cornell Med Center

Internal Medicine

CWRU / University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center

Internal Medicine

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center


Cleveland Clinic

Pathology/ CP Research

CWRU / University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center

Pediatrics/ Medical Genetics

Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

Radiation Oncology

Emory University School of Medicine

Radiation- Diagnostic

Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania 

Students: If you have something new to add, tell us about it here.