STEM

How does a biomedical sciences student with interests in clinical research go on to intern in the United States Senate? Like many other students, my undergraduate career followed a traditional path toward higher education. I kept my grades up, participated in extracurriculars, and was involved in a few clubs on campus. However, thanks to friends, mentors and the internet, it was clear that a career in STEM presented an immense number of other amazing opportunities. Looking into these opportunities, research quickly grabbed my attention. A professor was the first to introduce me to research and he motivated me to explore summer research opportunities. Looking back, I am grateful he did,...
Dear Research Advocate: Today the House and Senate passed a short-term continuing resolution (CR) to flat-fund the government through December 22. Congressional leaders hope this stop-gap will buy them enough time to negotiate a bipartisan budget deal that raises the Defense and non-Defense (NDD) spending caps. If the budget deal (#RaisetheCaps) is finalized by the 22nd, Congress may well pass yet another short-term CR to allow a month or two to complete an FY18 omnibus spending bill based on the new, higher funding levels. Continued momentum behind a budget deal is definitely good news, but momentum can wane; here is a new resource, culled from our state-by-state fact sheet series, that...
Dear Research Advocate, I was honored to speak yesterday to a group of early-career global health researchers, plus alums and mentors, gathered for orientation and training under the auspices of NIH’s Fogarty International Center. Following my prepared remarks we had a terrific informal discussion. A question from a researcher who had grown up in Kentucky triggered a thoughtful exchange: “how do I explain the value of my work to a resident of rural Kentucky, including why her taxes should pay for it?” These two linked but separate questions can seem quite daunting if, like most researchers, you have never been oriented, much less trained, to consider the public context of research. We’re...
Growing up in a rural community in upstate New York, I was not exposed to academic research at a young age. I knew I wanted to learn about diseases and the development of new treatments, even if I didn’t quite know exactly what that looked like at the time. A scholarship supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) made it possible for me to attend Clarkson University in Potsdam, New York where I studied biology and chemistry. The Ronald E. McNair Scholarship, a STEM program that provides under-represented populations with access to research, provided funding for my studies at the University of Rochester where I worked in the Gorbunova laboratory studying the obscure naked mole rats...
Hillary Clinton has been clear about her support for vaccines, but Donald Trump appears to be revising his views on immunizations. While supporting vaccination laws established by the states, Gary Johnson thinks the federal government should be allowed to intervene if there is a national or regional health concern. Jill Stein is concerned about declining vaccinations rates and has a plan to reverse it. The presidential candidates’ thoughts on vaccinations and 19 other science-related questions were released last Tuesday by ScienceDebate.org. Trump suggested a year ago at a GOP debate there’s a link between vaccinations and autism, giving an example of a 2 ½ year old child who developed a...
Transforming the current disease-specific non-profit funding model and the outlook for FY16 budget levels for research were among the topics addressed by Alex Silver, chairman and co-founder of EB Research Partnership and Representative Chris Van Hollen (MD-08) at Research!America’s Annual Members meeting held at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C. on March 11. Silver became an advocate for research after learning that his son Jackson, who is now seven years old, was diagnosed with a severe form of Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB), a debilitating and potentially deadly genetic condition that causes internal and external blisters all over the body causing constant pain. In addition to...
Reps. Wolf and Fattah to Receive the Edwin C. Whitehead Award for Medical Research Advocacy at Research!America’€™s Advocacy Awards Dinner on March 12 ALEXANDRIA, Va. - February 12, 2014 -Reps. Frank Wolf (R-VA) and Chaka Fattah (D-PA) will receive the Edwin C. Whitehead Award for Medical Research Advocacy for their leadership and unwavering commitment to supporting policies that promote federal and private sector medical research and innovation. Reps. Wolf and Fattah have spearheaded efforts to create a legislative and regulatory climate conducive to medical innovation. “Representatives Wolf and Fattah are exceptional champions for research,” said Research!America Chair John Edward Porter...
Dear Research Advocate: The end of the year is a good time to think ahead and consider our nation at the end of the decade; how will we fare in the world order? My letter this week to the editor of the New York Times highlights poll data indicating that Americans don’€™t believe the U.S. will be the world leader in science and technology by 2020. This data reflects opinions grounded in numerous media reports on China’s accomplishments and determination to lead the world in science. Chinese accomplishments in space of late and their plans for a space station in 2020 ought to be a 21st century “Sputnik moment” for the U.S. It should be a wake-up call to policy makers: get serious about...
Most Say Federally Funded Basic Research is Important to Private Sector Innovation Alexandria, Va.’€”February 26, 2013 ’€” More than two-thirds (67%) of small business leaders say basic research funded by the federal government is important to private sector innovation, according to a new nationwide survey of small business owners/operators commissioned by Research!America. In addition, nearly half (45%) say medical research funding to universities and other non-governmental research institutions should not be cut as part of sequestration, and a plurality (40%) say that such across-the-board cuts are not a smart strategy for reducing the deficit. The survey findings also reveal that small...
February 13, 2013 Research!America applauds President Obama for underscoring medical research as a national priority, along with defense and education. We’re gratified that he stressed the brutal impact of sequestration, across-the-board cuts, to medical research and reminded the country of goals within the reach of science, such as the promise of an “AIDS-free generation’€ and cures for deadly and debilitating diseases like Alzheimer’s. Issuing a clear challenge to the nation and the Congress, he spoke of the need to increase investments in science and innovation to a level “not seen since the Space Race.” We agree that educating young people in science, technology, engineering and math (...

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Without research, there is no hope.
The Honorable Paul G. Rogers