Awardees & Updates – 2017

2017 Gridley McKim-Smith Women’s Health Fellowship Awards

Laura Rodgers is an MD/PhD student at the University of Illinois at Chicago.  Her research is in ovarian cancer, specifically the role of PAX8, a protein essential for ovarian cancer growth and a drug that shows promise in thwarting this mechanism to possibly decrease metastasis and improve survival rates. Two of Laura’s aunts died of ovarian cancer and she wrote that she feels strongly in the need to make progress in treating this disease.   Her supervisor wrote: “Laura is one of those unique and special students..she is mature and hardworking..I rank her as the best PhD student I have trained or worked with over the last nine years.”

Kevin Shee is an MD/PhD student at Dartmouth Medical School. Kevin’s research is in breast cancer, specifically developing methods to use cellular and genetic tumor information for targeted patient-specific drug regimens. His mother had breast cancer which he wrote was a pivotal influence in his decision to go to medical school. As a Harvard undergraduate, Kevin pursued translational research at the prestigious Broad Institute of Harvard and at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). His supervisor wrote: “Kevin is by far the most talented and hardest working graduate student with whom I have ever worked; I have not met a more qualified or deserving candidate for a fellowship award. We are extremely impressed by Kevin’s maturity and dedication as an exceptional young investigator.”