William Jewell Department of Biology  
Student researches parasite vaccines in Brazil  

Nicholas Wheeler, Oxbridge Molecular Biology major, received a 2010 Hall Family Foundation Summer Academic Enrichment Grant. Wheeler researched novel drug/vaccine targets in the parasite Schistosoma mansoni, a blood disorder that is second only to malaria in World Health Organization rankings. He studied at a laboratory in Sao Paulo, Brazil, that was integral to the final sequencing of the genome associated with the disorder. He hopes to pursue a career in medical research. “After Jewell, my goal is to go to graduate school and get an M.D./Ph.D., which will enable me to participate in medical research,” Wheeler said. “Getting into this research early in my career will be extremely beneficial for me. It will help me build my resume for grad school and teach me more about what it means to be a full-time researcher and scientist.”

The Hall Family Foundation Summer Academic Enrichment Program is a William Jewell program that provides financial support for students interested in summer academic enrichment opportunities that are not typically available on the Jewell campus. Students complete a competitive funding application for individual awards of up to $5,000 which are available to all Jewell students in good standing prior to their senior year. Activities eligible for funding include summer study-abroad programs, workshops, intensive summer courses, conferences relating to the student’s academic major, programs providing advanced training in the student’s field of study and research opportunities at other institutions.

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