Two students from California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) presented posters detailing their research during the annual Society for Advancement of Hispanics/Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) National Conference from Oct. 13 to 15 at the Long Beach Convention Center. The conference is considered one of the largest annual gatherings of minority scientists in the country.
SACNAS offers three days of cutting-edge science workshops, networking, training, mentoring, and cultural activities for students and scientists at all levels. In all, 11 CSUDH student scholars, six faculty and staff members, and others took part in the conference. The students are all scholars in one of three scholarship programs: Maximizing Access to Research Careers (MARC); Undergraduate Student Training in Academic Research (U*STAR); and the Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement (RISE) program.
Physics major Amauri Tapia, a RISE scholar, presented his poster, “The Stability of Barred Disk Galaxies Over the Last 7 Billion Years.” He worked at UC San Diego (UCSD) with UCSD professor and Einstein Fellow Brooke Simmons during the Summer Training Academy for Research Success (STARS) program to conduct his research.
“Presenting at SACNAS was a rewarding experience. I met people in my field who want to help me in my future studies—people who can help me get into grad school at their respective universities, and who might end up being future colleagues of mine,” said Tapia. “I also got to make new friends, both in and outside of my field.”
Psychology major and STARS student Joshua Lozano presented “Investigating the Testing Effect with Recognition versus Cued Recall Tests.” The research for his poster was conducted under the guidance of UC San Diego Associate Professor Timothy C. Rickard. He, too, participated in the STARS summer research program at UCSD.
“As a first-generation college student, presenting at the national level, and the ability to network with other brilliant and diverse researchers, has been an invaluable experience,” said Lozano. “SACNAS has allowed me the opportunity to not only network in my field, but also to build long lasting relationships with colleagues and friends.”
Other SACNAS attendees included:
Francisco Bautista (RISE scholar, biology)
Karla Chavez (U*STAR scholar, psychology)
Daileen Cortez (RISE scholar, biology)
Cindy Lemus (RISE scholar, chemistry)
Ronell Lopez (biology, junior)
Iris Nakashima (U*STAR scholar, biology)
Maria Nava (RISE scholar, biology)
Luis Pena (RISE scholar, chemistry)
Chad Thomas (RISE scholar, biology);
“The SACNAS convention was a fun and new experience for me,” said Lopez. “It allowed me to learn more about research conducted around the nation, graduate school programs, and I had the privilege to meet researchers and graduate students who gave me sound advice and pointers for my next steps toward graduate school.”
The students were accompanied by Leonardo Martinez, professor of chemistry and U*STAR/RISE program director; Kenneth Rodriguez, assistant professor of chemistry and U*STAR/RISE faculty liaison; Tigress Briggs-Wroten, U*STAR/RISE program manager; Obi Onyekwere, U*STAR/RISE program assistant; Laura Robles, biology professor emeritus; and Thomas Landefeld, professor of biology.