The Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation is working with Langston University to change the complexion of science.
Yamiah Mitchell is a rising senior at Langston University and one of six students to be part of the inaugural class of Langston Biomedical Research Scholars.
“At Langston, we don't have a lot of opportunities to do hands on research, so I did research and the time it takes and the different routes you have to take to get some answers,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell said this two month program helped her prepare for a career after college where she plans to study an autoimmune disease that hits close to home.
“I chose lupus specifically because it impacts African American women at a high significant rate and it also impacts myself and my family,” Mitchell said.
OMRF said they've worked with Langston University in the past, but they wanted to do more for the Langston Lions and to add more diversity to STEM world.
“They're actually helping us change the face of research. We have a real lack of diversity in research and we always think of ourselves as a diverse institute but there are definitely underrepresented communities in science and all stem areas and that's a problem,” said Courtney Greenwood, OMRF’s vice president of human resources.
Dr. Byron Quinn with Langston said this partnership addresses that issue and his students get to walk away with a more meaningful experience.
“They're moving into actual real world research experiences. This is what they would be doing if they actually take on a job to do research or biomedical research,” Quinn said.
The program ends this week, but students can still come in and continue to work on their research. They can also work on their research at Langston.
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