MSTC Seniors Finished the Year with Senior Symposium

The MSTC Senior Symposium was held at Dunbar on April 15.

Dunbar’s MSTC program is designed for students who are competitive in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) disciplines. Each year every senior is required to partake in a research study that accumulates about 360 hours and present the project at Dunbar’s MSTC Senior Symposium.

“Finishing off my research project at symposium was a relief, as it marked the end of a year-long journey at my lab. It also had a bit of sadness too. While I can’t say I loved every moment of it, I learned a lot from my experiences at research,” said senior Ethan Tan.

Most students conducted their research at the University of Kentucky where they learned from a mentor who helped them develop research on a specific topic. Senior Spandan Buch conducted his research at the University of Kentucky’s cancer laboratory.

“My research project was looking into a gene known as ‘c-Myc’ which is a gene that researchers have discovered to be a big driver of cell growth in cancer cells,” said Buch. “My research was looking at ‘c-Myc’ in skeletal muscle, because we don’t know a lot about how it works in our muscles. Understanding how it helps muscle growth, if at all, could lead to potential gene therapies for treating muscle loss, which is important because muscle is really important for overall health and fighting other diseases in our bodies.”

This years symposium took place on April 15 at Dunbar from 8 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Every senior was given the opportunity to present their year long research to their families, while also gaining more knowledge about their peers’ research.

“Senior symposium was a great experience. Presenting all our hard work to family and friends and showing them the potential for change that can be brought by students was truly enlightening,” said senior Hemanth Sontenam.