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Applications Now Being Accepted for Young Research Fellows Program
Joshua Schiowitz, a senior film major in the College of Visual and Performing Arts and political science major in the College of Arts and Sciences and the Maxwell School, is researching the changing political, cultural and economic dynamics of the Rust Belt through a multimedia project that incorporates narrative journalism, photography and documentary filmmaking. He is working on a short film that explores the anti-democratic politics and environmental injustice at the center of school consolidation in northeastern Pennsylvania.
Last summer, Serena Omo-Lamai, a senior bioengineering major in the College of Engineering and Computer Science, conducted research at Upstate Medical University, investigating the effects of the bacterial enzyme chondroitinase ABC delivered within biodegradable nanospheres on oligodendrocyte progenitor cell migration to spinal cord lesion sites. She is currently a member of the laboratory of Alison Patteson, assistant professor of physics in the College of Arts and Sciences, where she is working on analyzing the effects of polyacrylamide gel stiffness on the growth and swarming properties of bacterial cells.
Candice Hatakeyama, a junior musical theater major in the College of Visual and Performing Arts, is working on adapting Ruth Ozeki’s “A Tale for the Time Being” into a musical.
All three are members of the Young Research Fellows (YRF) program. Young Research Fellows, guided by a faculty mentor, engage in two years of group mentoring in early research and creative inquiry development and have access to up to $5,000 in funding towards research expenses upon submission of approved budgets. Faculty mentors are eligible for a one-time grant of $750 in research funds. The program is supported by the Syracuse Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Engagement (SOURCE) and the Center for Fellowship and Scholarship Advising (CFSA).
The SOURCE provides funding opportunities and serves as a hub to foster and support diverse undergraduate engagement in faculty-guided scholarly research and creative inquiry across all disciplines and programs at Syracuse University. The CFSA’s mission is to make students, alumni and faculty aware of nationally competitive fellowship and scholarship opportunities; to help students and alumni identify scholarship opportunities appropriate to their interests and backgrounds; and to assist them through all stages of the application process, from planning to submission to interviews.
Omo-Lamai, Schiowitz and Hatakeyama all say YRF has been crucial to their success in their respective studies.
“The YRF program has provided me with a wealth of resources and a broad support network which has motivated me to engage in undergraduate research,” Omo-Lamai says. “The experiences I have had have further solidified my goal of obtaining a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering, which I plan to pursue after graduation.”
“YRF has been extremely helpful to me, particularly because of the mentorship of Kate Hanson (director of the SOURCE) and Jolynn Parker (director of CFSA), and because of the program’s flexibility to let students pursue non-traditional research and creative work—including multimedia projects like mine,” says Schiowitz. “I feel I’ve become a better researcher and artist because of this freedom to explore.”
Hatakeyama is currently in the process of putting together a staged reading of her musical. “I am very excited and motivated by the Young Research Fellows Program because of the freedom it gives me to explore, create and even fail,” she says. “In the real world, creating a musical takes many years, and one of the biggest pitfalls is often finding the funding to put on those readings and initial stagings of the project that are so integral to the creative evolution of the piece itself. The funding that the YRF program provides will assist in putting on a presentation of my work that will undoubtedly propel me forward in the synthesis of this piece.”
The application cycle is now open for the next YRF cohort, with a deadline of Monday, April 13. The program is open to students in all disciplines, and to be eligible students must:
- Be a first-year student;
- Have a minimum 3.7 grade point average;
- Have the endorsement of a faculty member willing to serve as faculty mentor for the two-year program; and
- Have a demonstrated commitment to research/creative inquiry.
Faculty mentors must:
- Meet with the student at least twice per semester;
- Complete a brief progress report each semester; and
- Consult on and approve student budget requests.
- Faculty mentors are typically tenured or tenure-track faculty. For faculty with other kinds of appointments, please contact the SOURCE.
The faculty endorsement link can be found here.
If you have questions or need more information, call the SOURCE at 315.443.2091 or email Kate Hanson at firstname.lastname@example.org.