Please view the video below describing the project activities of the WNY Genetics in Research Partnership.
The Western New York Genetics in Research Partnership will develop an ongoing partnership with disadvantaged schools across a 14-county region in western New York that will serve as a pipeline for teacher and student recruitment, training and mentorship in STEM, with a particular focus on basic genome analysis and bioinformatics in an NSF ITEST Strategies project (Award Number 1311902 )
The STEM-related goals of the project are to:
- allow high school students and teachers to participate in scientific research
- stimulate the interest of students in pursuing careers in science and technology through the use of a unique, interactive learning environment combined with intensive support intervention and
- encourage teachers to include bioinformatics and genomics in their curriculum.
Thirty biology teachers annually from the partnering schools will attend a Summer Workshop at the University at Buffalo where they will receive training in use of the Integrated Microbial Genomes Annotation Collaboration Toolkit (IMG-ACT) of the U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute. During Semester I of each school year, 4 STEM college and career exploration sessions will be conducted to familiarize students with the gene annotation project and to give it some “real world” context. Students will develop career plans by the last of these sessions as well as indicate their interest in doing gene annotation during the Semester II. Each teacher will then work with at least 5 students (150 total per year) to participate in genome annotation using the IMG-ACT during the school year. Each spring, a Capstone Symposium will be held, bringing participating students and teachers together to present their projects and network with researchers and employers. Students will be offered support (e.g., scholarship and career information, new internship opportunities) as they enter and progress through college, supporting entry to, and retention in, STEM-related careers in the region.
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University at Buffalo, Department of Biotechnical and Clinical Laboratory Sciences
Stephen T. Koury, Ph.D.
Rama Dey-Rao, Ph.D.
Patricia Masso-Welch, Ph.D.
University at Buffalo, Department of Biochemistry, Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences
Norma Nowak, Ph.D.
Westfield Central School
Lon Knappenberger, NY State Master Teacher
New York State Area Health Education Center System
Shannon Carlin-Menter, Ph.D.
Anna Gossin, MLS
Erie Niagara Area Health Education Center System
Danise Wilson, MPH, CEO
Rural Area Health Education Center System
Catherine Huff, CEO
Lisa Green, Project Coordinator
Oak Ridge Associated Universities
Erin Mehalic Burr, Ph.D.
Kimberle Kelly, Ph.D.
Leigh Ann Pennington, Ph.D.
Microbial Genome Annotation Network (MGAN)
The Microbial Genome Annotation Network (MGAN) is a partnership between academic institutions across the U.S. and the Department of Energy’s Joint Genome Institute to provide undergraduates with a contemporary and inexpensive authentic research experience in microbial genome annotation and comparative analysis. The Western NY Genetics in Research Partnership is one of a number of groups using GENI-ACT to annotate microbial genomes at the high school, undergraduate and graduate level.