The Home of Midwood Science Research

Check the calendar

Posted on Wednesday, September 7, 2022 by for Juniors, Seniors.

Check the calendar

The events of 2022

Posted on Sunday, June 26, 2022 by for Everyone.

Big list of published papers with Midwood Science coauthors

Posted on Sunday, June 26, 2022 by for Publications.

Science is a collaborative effort. No one works alone. The highest praise a mentor can give to a student is to include them as an author on a scientific paper. From 1998 to 2022, 31 Midwood Science students have seen the work they did while still in high school published in peer-reviewed journals. Three had their names appear first in the list of authors, which means they were recognized as contributing more than anyone else.

All efforts have been made to ensure this record is exhaustively complete. If I have missed anything, please let me know.

2022

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Daelah is the first author of this paper, a position that is rare for high school students.

2021

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2020

Nomon graduated in 2017, Jennifer in 2018, Toby in 2019.

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2018

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2015

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Kiara and Shadika graduated in 2014. Kahei graduated from Midwood in 2008 and was working with Dr. Rosenfield as student of SUNY Optometry when this experiment was conducted.

2014

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Gabby is the first author of this paper, a position that is rare for high school students.

2013

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Francisca and Mercy graduated in 2011, Leo in 2013.

2012

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2011

The Journal of Chirality cover

2009

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Two students who graduated in 2009 coauthored academic works.

2008

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2007

Three students who graduated in 2007 coauthored academic works.

2005

Four students who graduated in 2005 coauthored academic works.

2002

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Jacquline graduated in 2001 and Jessica graduated in 1999.

2000

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1999

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  • Hui Kun Hao

1998

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Daelah Nicholas presents at Nutrition 2022; Published in Current Developments in Nutrition

Posted on Wednesday, June 15, 2022 by for Publications.

On Tuesday, June 14, Midwood Science senior Daelah Nicholas presented her research project at the American Society for Nutrition's virtual conference, Nutrition 2022. An abstract of her work was also published at the same time in the June issue of Current Developments in Nutrition. The conference presentation is for registered attendees only, but the journal article is "open access", i.e. free of charge. Daelah worked under the supervision of Dr. Jean Kever in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan.

Poster
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Presentation
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Abstract
Infant temperament: Exploring the potential role of maternal dietary choline and folate consumption during pregnancy in a Michigan pregnancy cohort. Daelah Nicholas (Midwood High School) with Chia-Lun Yang, Nicole Talge, & Dr. Jean Kerver (Michigan State University).

2022 Midwood Science Fair Awards

Posted on Monday, June 13, 2022 by for Awards, Science Fair.

1st Place

Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Anna Bukhman
pH Impact on Algae Growth
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Adrian Perez & Fiona Zhao
How different acne medications affect the development of E. coli bacteria

2nd Place

Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Cindy Li
The Science Behind The Perfect Cookie
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Hamood Khan
One in a melon: the effect of fertilizers on the height of watermelon plants
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Victoria Ronan & Lucy Guo
Germ-Proof!

3rd Place

Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Xinwei Chen
Effects of pH on Bacterial Degradation
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Emely Rivas & Katelyn Martinez
The Biofuel in Bio-you
 

Honorable Mention

Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Rebecca Yakobovich & Eman Shabbir
Conformity Trends in High School
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Jinyu Xu
Soil Moisture Content vs. Volt Resistors (Prototype)
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Batool Kamal
Rethink What You Drink
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Eda Maqellara & Elana Chen
No Bacteria Please!
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Diana Chen Feng & Jennifer Fan
Disinfectants vs. Bacteria
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Hailey Lau & Ashley Castillo Mendez
Bacteria: #1 Public Enemy to Masks

Bonus photo

Group photo of all the winners holding their trophies
Congrats to all the winners!

2022 Science Fair Abstract Book (and more from the past)

Posted on Wednesday, June 1, 2022 by for Science Fair.

2022 abstract book cover
2021 abstract book cover 2020 abstract book cover 2019 abstract book cover 2018 abstract book cover 2017 abstract book cover 2016 abstract book cover 2015 abstract book cover 2014 abstract book cover 2013 abstract book cover 2012 abstract book cover 2011 abstract book cover 2010 abstract book cover

Six science projects win recognition at Metro JSHS; Senior’s “Emo” robot takes first place in engineering

Posted on Wednesday, June 1, 2022 by for JSHS, Media.

Bintia Keita '22 holds Emo, her robotics toy for children with autism.

Six projects made by Midwood students made it into the semifinals for the NYC Metro Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS) held virtually at York College this February. Senior Bintia Keita won First Place in Engineering, earning a spot as one of five students representing New York City at the 60th National JSHS. She brought her robot "Emo" to Albuquerque, New Mexico, this April.

"The competition was amazing from day one," said Keita. "My delegation was full of awesome, really smart people from New York City. It was great to be around people who were motivated and dedicated and brilliant in the field that they were studying. It was amazing."

The JSHS is a U.S. Department of Defense-sponsored high school STEM competition. The National Symposium brings together 245 high school students who qualified at regional symposiums held at partnered universities and organizations nationwide.

Emo is Keita's robotics toy for children with autism, designed to improve their interactions and emotional interpretation. Emo's screen is used to play guessing games with three levels of difficulty: emoji, cartoon, and realistic.

After the child successfully matches the emoji to the emotion, Emo uses positive reinforcement through confetti, animations, and movement. Through a slow evolution, autistic children who can identify the correct emotion can better recognize it in a live person.

Keita coded the elements of the display such as the guessing game, animations, and movements using Javascript and a free web editor, P5JS. "I would create a 3D model using Fusion 360, and then I would print it at school and assemble it using stuff I found in my dad's toolbox," she said.

Currently, Keita is working on making Emo mobile and is thinking about sending it to different clinics.

Semifinalists Michelle Yang '22 and Zitong Liu '22 worked on veganism and plant-based alternatives to meat after they noticed plant-based meat as the only option on the shelves after meat shortages in Ohio supermarkets during the pandemic.

They cooked and tested multiple batches and recipes and assessed each recipe's environmental impact, computing factors such as water consumption and atmospheric carbon release. "I think the public should be educated on the benefits of vegan meat," said Yang.

Being able to share findings with the public is one of the fun parts of the JSHS, she added. "It's just really exciting to share our project with other schools," said Yang. "Most of my group were from Bronx Science, and the other one was from Stuy[vesant]. It was interesting seeing their projects and then secretly comparing them with mine."

Samarpreet Singh '22 ran an experiment to find a relationship between social media use and a person's levels of optimism or pessimism. He found that students who excessively use social media are more likely to be pessimistic.

Singh found that the Midwood student body averages around six hours of social media use per day. Previous studies recommended 30 minutes to be a healthy amount. "I feel like in today's generation, the repercussions have to be considered," said Singh. "Midwood students specifically need to lower their social media use."

Lian Hao Zheng '22, working with seniors Benny Dong and Jason Wu, conducted a survey-based study to find the effect of gratitude on a person's mental and physical health, specifically on sleep quality and depression.

"Gratitude is the ability to stay in the present," said Zheng, "to be attentive to your surroundings, to be grateful for the things that are happening around you. Being a more empathetic person is definitely the way to increase your gratitude."

He found that increased gratitude leads to lower levels of depression and higher levels of sleep quality. "If there is a significant correlation, then it may have a potential use as a medical treatment," said Zheng.


Midwood also had five other semifinalist projects at the NYC Metro JSHS.

Zheng said it felt great becoming a semifinalist. "I'm happy that this topic is being recognized, as well as my follow-up study about mindfulness," he said. "I'm just happy both of them got the grant from NYT, which shows people actually care."

Muhammad Sharjeel '22 studied the difference between extroverts and introverts and their homework behavior. Homework behavior was measured by time, effort, and performance.

"When you think of extraversion, like how social someone is, you wouldn't connect that to homework, so that's why it was interesting," said Sharjeel.

He conducted an experiment using questionnaires and an experimental implicit association test, both testing which side of the introversion / extraversion spectrum the participants were on based on their identification-related words (shyness), phrases, and questions.

In his first study, he found a weak negative correlation but no correlation between extraversion and homework time in his second study. He also found that procrastination and homework performance had no correlation with extraversion. Using these findings might help teachers better understand how students learn, he explained.

Enaya Ahmad '22 studied the "other-race effect": how people are better able to recognize faces from their own race than faces from other races. She sought to answer the question "Is there a presence of the other-race effect in teenagers, and is the trend similar to infants and adults?"


Keita was one of five students from NYC who got to attend the national symposium in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

"When I walked outside, I was able to remember faces of my own race and not other faces," said Ahmad. "Sometimes I misidentify my white neighbors as somebody else, which is something that I found odd because it didn't happen with me for other South Asians."

Ahmad showed African American, White, and Asian faces to people and later made them find the original face that was shown with two altered versions of that face.

Those who lived in a less racially diverse neighborhood were better at recognizing their own race than other races. The other-race effect was present only in 14-16-year-olds; 17-18 year-olds recognized other races better, she found.

Within the behavioral psychology category, Ahmad was with nine other students, all of whom were from Bronx Science. "It was definitely intimidating, but I felt proud to be there, representing Midwood," said Ahmad. "That was a really proud moment because I put a lot of effort into my project."

"I thought we had really good results this year," said Mr. Glenn Elert, the research teacher. "We did really well because Bintia got to go to nationals, and that hasn't happened in – it might be 10 years. So that's an awesome accomplishment on Bintia's part and something she should really be proud of."

All the finalists recommended the three-year science research class at Midwood. "Colleges want to see you do something that requires independence, creativity, and responsibility," said Mr. Elert. "The thing we need are people who are interested in working on a long-term project on their own."

"We had an alumnus who graduated in the '80s, Fritz Francois," said Mr. Elert. "He is now the dean of admissions at the NYU School of Medicine. He came back, and he was talking to our students, and he said, 'We routinely reject people from the NYU School of Medicine who have 4.0 averages because they don't have anything else.' A research class sets you apart."

Written by Rachel Dong (Class of 2023)
This article originally appeared in the June 2022 issue of Argus.

Daelah Nicholas and Bintia Keita win Gold at 2022 NYC ACT-SO; Both headed to national competition in July

Posted on Sunday, May 22, 2022 by for ACT-SO, Awards.

Midwood Science seniors Daelah Nicholas and Bintia Keita received Gold Medals at this year's New York City Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics (ACT-SO) — Daelah in Medicine and Health and Bintia in Engineering. Both students are headed to Atlantic City in July where they will present their research projects at the NAACP National Convention.

Award winners and teacher standing in front of artwork in the annex hallway
Daelah Nicholas, Mr. Elert, Bintia Keita

Poster Poster
Daelah Nicholas. Category: Medicine and Health. Project: Infant temperament: Exploring the potential role of maternal dietary choline and folate consumption during pregnancy in a Michigan pregnancy cohort. Mentor: Dr. Jean M. Kerver, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Michigan State University Bintia Keita. Category: Engineering. Project: "Emo's" potential application for children with autism. Mentors: Dr. Kathleen McDermott and Dr. Scott Fitzgerald, Tandon School of Engineering, New York University

Michelle Yang and Zitong Liu win 2 awards at 2022 Terra NYC finals

Posted on Tuesday, April 12, 2022 by for Awards, Terra NYC.

Congratulations go out to the team of Zitong Liu and Michelle Yang. Their project, "Veganism Saves the World: Plant-Based Meat Alternatives," won Honors at the 2022 Terra NYC STEM Fair, making them one of the top high school science research projects in New York City. They also won the NOAA Award for "fine work about science, service, and stewardship in the study of climate, weather, oceans, and coasts."

Michelle Yang and Zitong Liu advance to Terra NYC finals

Posted on Friday, March 18, 2022 by for Awards, Terra NYC.

Congratulations go out to Michelle Yang and Zitong Liu as their project "Veganism saves the world: Plant-based meat alternatives" joins the city's top 100 science projects at the Terra NYC STEM Fair.

Michelle and Zitong have been working to recreate and improve on plant-based meat recipes. They prepared multiple test batches, cooked them, and had volunteers taste test them. They then took their project to the next level and applied the environmental impact assessment done by the Impossible corporation to the different recipes. They computed things such as water consumption, atmospheric carbon release, and nitrogen eutrophication potential. They did this all without the help of a professional food scientist, and were funded in part by a grant from the New York Institute of Technology.

Unfortunately the finals will be held virtually again — Saturday and Sunday, March 26 and 27. When the event was held in real life, students would present at the American Museum of Natural History. The photos below show Michelle and Zitong on a field trip for Sophomore Science Research. We couldn't go the the museum this year, so we went two years ago.

Selfie of the practice session
Michelle and Zitong (center) practicing their Terra NYC presentation with "judges" Mr. Elert (far left), Katherine Zhong (left), and Midwood Mayor Nafisa Haque (right).

6 semifinalists at 2022 Metro NYC JSHS, Bintia Keita going to National JSHS in April

Posted on Thursday, March 3, 2022 by for Awards, JSHS.

On Sunday, February 6, 2022 York College hosted the latest (virtual) installment of the NYC Metro Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS). JSHS is a nationwide collection of 48 regional competitions sponsored by the US Department of Defense whose aims are to promote original STEM research at the high school level and to publicly recognize students for outstanding achievement.

Six projects by Midwood students made it to the semifinals round this year. Bintia Keita won First Place in Engineering and impressed the judges so much that she is one of five students representing New York City at the 60th National JSHS In Albuquerque, New Mexico in April.

National JSHS delegate

  • Bintia Keita
    Category: Engineering
    Project: "Emo's" potential application for children with autism
    Mentors: Dr. Kathleen McDermott and Dr. Scott Fitzgerald in the Tandon School of Engineering at New York University

NYC Metro JSHS semifinalists

  • Enaya Ahmad
    Category: Behavioral & Social Sciences
    Project: The presence of the other race effect in teenagers
    Mentor: Dr. Grit Herzmann in the Department of Psychology at The College of Wooster
  • Muhammad Sharjeel
    Category: Behavioral & Social Sciences
    Project: Association between extroversion and homework behavior among NYC high school students
    Mentor: Dr. Jason Young in the Department of Psychology at Hunter College
  • Samarpreet Singh
    Category: Behavioral & Social Sciences
    Project: Social media usage and the degree of optimistic bias in adolescents
    Mentor: Dr. Steven Anolik in the Department of Psychology at St Francis College
  • Benny Dong & Jason Wu & Lian Hao Zheng
    Category: Behavioral & Social Sciences
    Project: How does gratitude affect one's quality of sleep and level of depression?
    Mentor: Dr. Steven Anolik in the Department of Psychology at St Francis College
  • Michelle Yang & Zitong Liu
    Category: Environmental Sciences
    Project: Veganism saves the world: Plant-based meat alternatives

Group photo on the Midwood bridge over Bedford Avenue

Bintia Keita receives NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing

Posted on Monday, February 14, 2022 by for Awards.

Midwood Science senior Bintia Keita was one of 40 winners nationwide to receive the 2022 Award for Aspirations in Computing (AiC) from the National Center for Women and Information Technology (NCWIT). Since there were over 3,500 applicants, Bintia is almost literally a one-in-a-hundred student (one in 87.5 for the statistically pedantic out there).

The NCWIT AiC honors 9th–12th grade women, genderqueer, or non-binary students for their computing-related achievements and interests, and encourages them to pursue their passions. Award recipients are selected based on their aptitude and aspirations in technology and computing, as demonstrated by their computing experience, computing-related activities, leadership experience, tenacity in the face of barriers to access, and plans for post-secondary education.

Bintia’s project is a robot named "Emo" who can be used to teach children with autism about emotions. She built and programmed Emo herself at home using parts partially paid for by a grant from the New York Institute of Technology and parts 3D printed at Midwood.

Bintia Keita Emo
NCWIT logo AIC logo

Senior Science Research 2022

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2022 by for Seniors.

Large group photo on the front steps of Midwood

2 Midwood projects receive grant from NYIT

Posted on Tuesday, January 25, 2022 by for Awards.

The Mini-Research Grant Award (MRGA) is an initiative of the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) that awards monetary grants to high school students for scientific research projects still in the proposal stage. Two projects by Midwood students were selected on Tuesday, January 25, 2022 — and soon thereafter NYIT sent us $600.

  • Senior Lianhao Zheng received a grant of $300 for his proposal "How does a 9–12th grade high school students’ mindfulness affect their level of depression and sleep quality?" Lianhao’s work will be submitted to the AP Capstone program in May. This is the second time he has won this award.
  • Juniors Angel Wu, Aaron Xu, and Jiaen Chen received a grant of $300 for their proposal "The effect of external factors on the perception and taste of food". The team will submit their work to the Terra NYC STEM Fair and other competitions in their senior year.

Group photo with students holding checks

Data for the people (D4P): Social behavior

Posted on Monday, January 24, 2022 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Lectures, Seniors.

News from RockEDU, the science outreach program of The Rockefeller University in New York.

Data for the People (D4P) is back for season 2! This season will feature several unique episodes focused exclusively on social behavior in a variety of model organisms. Through these model systems (ants, nematode worms, and flies) we will wonder "What does it mean to be social?" "What animals are capable of social behavior?" and most importantly "What can we learn from animals about social behavior?"

All D4P episodes will take place on a Wednesday afternoon 4:00 PM–5:00 PM Eastern Time. Each episode has its own registration link.

Two points of extra credit will be awarded to all students who provide proof of attendance on the day of the event and complete the Google Classroom version of this assignment. You may attend as many episodes as you wish, just remember to submit your response to the assignment by 9:00 AM on Thursday after the event

Data for the People (D4P) is an interactive web-series that invites all people to engage with relevant scientific research topics presented by scientists from our communities. Information is sourced directly from primary scientific literature and explored in a way that maintains the rigor of the research while eliminating inaccessible jargon.

RockEDU Data for the People logo

2021 Published Papers

Posted on Saturday, January 22, 2022 by for Publications.

Journal cover

Student work published in print, on-line, or both in 2021.

Merry Newtonmas everyone!

Posted on Saturday, December 25, 2021 by for Everyone.

Sheldon holding a bust of Sir Isaac Newton
youtu.be/EqiiCOFR0Y8

2022 Talking Science: Infectious Diseases and Immunology

Posted on Sunday, December 19, 2021 by for Extra Credit, Lectures.

Add to Calendar
Monday
10

The Rockefeller University invites you to participate in Talking Science with renowned Rockefeller scientists who will explore the fundamentals of Infectious Diseases and Immunology. Topics covered in this virtual webinar will include a variety of diseases, how they spread, and what we can do to protect ourselves from them.

Talking Science is an annual event designed for grades 9–12, led by members of The Rockefeller University's elite faculty. This year's event will be held virtually on January 10, 2022 as a Zoom webinar. Register now! A unique Zoom link will be sent to you prior to the lecture.

Two points of extra credit will be awarded to all students who provide proof of attendance on the day of the event and complete the Google Classroom version of this assignment for any one of the speakers before 9:00 AM Tuesday, January 11.

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Before There Was COVID, There Was (And Is!) Tuberculosis

Jeremy M. Rock, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor and head, Laboratory of Host-Pathogen Biology, The Rockefeller University

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Mosquitoes: The World's Most Dangerous Animal

Leslie B. Vosshall, Ph.D.
Robin Chemers Neustein Professor and head, Laboratory of Neurogenetics and Behavior, The Rockefeller University; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

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Antibody-Based Therapies For HIV And COVID-19

Christian Gaebler, M.D.
Assistant Professor of Clinical Investigation, Robert S. Wennett Fellow, Laboratory of Molecular Immunology, The Rockefeller University

JSHS application open for one week

Posted on Friday, November 12, 2021 by for JSHS, Seniors.

Applications are now being accepted for the New York City Metro Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS). Anyone with a research report that is finished (or even just close enough) can enter. Teams can enter together, but only one team member presents.

The application is done through a web form. You type your info into the fields, upload a PDF of your latest and greatest research report, upload some additional forms and other documentation, and then hit the "submit" button. Easy peasy. This has to be completed in the Research Room with me witnessing it on or before Friday, November 19. (Don't blame me for the short notice, this is how they operate.) Completing the application is worth +4 points of extra credit.

JSHS logo

The top 120 projects will be invited to York College to present at the Symposium on Sunday, February 6, 2022. If COVID restrictions are still in effect at CUNY campuses in February, the event will be held virtually. Presenting at the Symposium will be worth +10 points. In the case of team projects, the presenter will get +10 points and the other team members will receive +5 points.

Contact me quickly if you are interested in applying. I have paperwork to do that requires the Principal's signature (JSHS Form C) and I am not doing it on the day it's due. If you are working with a mentor, you also need their signature on one form (JSHS Form B). They would probably appreciate it if you contacted them as soon as possible. They would probably appreciate it even more if you partially filled out the form for them. There is also a form for projects involving human subjects (JSHS Form A), but you can give them your IRB form instead.

Read the Student Registration page for details on what is needed for the application. Contact me if you have questions.

2021 Major trends in modern cancer research

Posted on Saturday, October 30, 2021 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

Add to Calendar
Wednesday
10

On Wednesday, November 10, 2021, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center will host its 16th annual Major trends in modern cancer research lecture for high and college students and their teachers. (Members of the public are also welcome to attend.) The event will take place virtually from 6:00–7:30 PM. Registration is required.

This event is a free community education program designed to engage and inspire the next generation of progressive researchers and scientists. MSK has a wide range of opportunities to volunteer at our labs, find mentors at MSK, and potentially join our research community.

Two points of extra credit will be awarded to all students who provide proof of attendance on the day of the event and complete the Google Classroom version of this assignment for any one of the speakers before 9:00 AM Friday, November 12.

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Moderator
Craig B. Thompson
President and CEO of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

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Moderator
Michael Overholtzer, PhD
Dean, Gerstner Sloan Kettering Graduate School

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Speaker
Vinod Balachandran, MD
Surgeon
Member, David M. Rubenstein Center for Pancreatic Cancer Research

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Speaker
Gretchen Diehl, PhD
Immunologist
Associate Member, SKI Immunology Program

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Speaker
Alexander Drilon, MD
Medical Oncologist
Chief, Early Drug Development Service, MSK

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