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Summer Intership Program

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NOTICE - We are not accepting applications for the Summer Internship Program pending continuing program re-organization efforts

GS-LSAMP 2014 Conference
2014 Summer High School Research Internship Program
2013 Summer High School Research Internship Program
Dr. Juan Robles' Story
Alumni News

In addition, the October 2013 issue of Rutgers' Inside NJMS magazine (Vol. 8, No. 10) features two articles on PHRI's Newark Public High School Projects.

The first article (follow this link) provides an overview on the Sports Leadership Camp organized by Jim Morris.

The second article (follow this link) brings attention to the 2013 Summer High School Research Internship Program.

GS-LSAMP 2014 Conference

Senator Cory Booker, was the invited keynote speaker at the 6th Annual Garden State-Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (GS-LSAMP) Conference held at Rutgers-New Brunswick on October 3, 2014. The following PHRI summer interns presented their posters, all of which were judged during the poster session of the Conference: Faith Ogbennaya, Abigail Amponsah, Corally Valembrun, Katherine Mendoza, Chloe Segui, Chinidum Nwaigwe. These were the only high school students who were invited to participate and their work was judged alongside posters describing summer research experiences of over 120 undergraduate students, from about 15 New Jersey univeristies, colleges and community colleges. Only four posters were recognized as exemplery and none were submitted by the summer interns. To view a series of photos that show the interns participating in the all-day conference select this link.

Chinidum Nwaigwe, Senator Cory Booker and Chloe Segui.

2014 Summer High School Research Internship Program

The Summer High School Research Internship Program serves minority students who attend Newark schools or live in the City of Newark, and their teachers. The Program nurtures through intense hands-on laboratory research experience an acute interest in science. Mr. Yaakov Saturen directs the program, working with Newark teachers, principals, and others to recruit highly motivated, talented, under-represented minority students into the program each year.

The students begin with a two-week workshop that introduces them to the vocabulary of molecular biology and medicine, as well as to basic laboratory skills, tools and techniques. They meet PHRI-NJMS Principal Investigators, who give a series of lectures. They are then assigned to a Principal Investigator’s laboratory, paired with a mentor, and spend six weeks working in a state-of-the-art research laboratory on his or her own research project. Over the course of the summer, they meet weekly to discuss their projects and each student writes a short research paper on his or her project. They also attend field trips to sites where they can see how medical and other research is being applied for the benefit of society. Finally, they explore educational and career options in science, and develop analytical and critical thinking skills that can be used throughout their lives.

The following student interns participated in the 2014 PHRI Summer High School Research Intern Program and are seen in the photo below:


Front: Jannie Delos Reyes (T.A.), Corally Valembrun, Maisha Manzoor, Chloe Segui, Faith Ogbennaya, Camila Morocho, William Rebolledo
Back: Mr. Saturen (Program Director), Edith White, Abigail Amponsah, Katherine Mendoza, Ramani Dayon, Chinedum Nwaigwe

They are students at Science Park HS, University HS and St Vincent Academy, all in Newark, NJ.

On one of their field trips, the students visited Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories on Long Island, NY, where they met with James Watson, who together with Francis Crick "discovered" the structure of DNA.


Front row (4)  Faith Ogbennaya, Camilla Morocho, Dr. James Watson, Maisha Manzoor
Back row (9)  Chinidum Nwaigwe, William Rebolledo, Abigail Amponsah, Ramani Dayon, Chloe Segui, Corally Valembrun, Edith White, Katherine Mendoza, Mr. Yak Saturen
(Photo taken by Jannie DelosReyes)

The PHRI Summer 2014 HS Research Intern Convocation, was held at ICPH on August 28, 2014:


Corally Valembrun explains her project to David Perlin, her PI and Cristina Jimenez, her Mentor at the poster session preceding the Convocation.


Former intern, teaching assistant and mentor, Juan Robles, MD presenting the keynote address, at the Summer 2014 Convocation.


Abigail Amponsah describing her summer research project to the Convocation audience.

The ACS Project SEED Poster Competition was held on Sept 22, 2014 at Seton Hall University and sponsored by the North Jersey Branch of the American Chemical Society and judged by its members and associates:


William Rebollado (left) and Ramani Dayon (right) describe their projects to the judges.


Group photo of some of the proud PHRI Summer 2014 interns winners with their ribbons, certificates and grand prizes* of laptops and printers. L to R: Abigail Amponsah, Faith Ogbennaya, Maisha Manzoor*, Corally Valembrun*, Ramani Dayon, Chinidum Nwaigwe, Chloe Segui*. (Absent from Photo-Op were Camilla Morocho*, Edith White and William Rebollado, also 1st prize winners).

For more information call or write:

Mr. Yaakov Saturen
Director, High School Research Internship Program
Public Health Research Institute Center
New Jersey Medical School - Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
225 Warren Street
Newark NJ 07103
Email: satureya@unjms.rutgers.edu
Tel. (973) 854-3100
Fax. (973) 854-3101

2013 Summer High School Research Internship Program

The following student interns participated in the 2013 PHRI Summer High School Research Intern Program:


Front, Left to right: Laura Rivera, Janell Good, Wallis Muraca, Victoria Ribeiro, Sophia Ribeiro, Jannie Delos Reyes (TA), Ranelle Tulloch, Ramani Dayon Rear, Left to right: Mr. Saturen, Robert Smith, Demetrius Beckham, Wesley Colon, Chinedum Nwaigwe, Mike Salas, Chioma Onwunaka

Five high schools were represented: Arts High School, Science Park High School, University High School, West Side High School and St. Vincent Academy.

The PHRI Summer 2013 High School Internship Program was generously supported by the Prudential Foundation, Victoria Foundation, ACS-Project SEED, PHRI-NJMS, the National Summer Learning Association, and Private Individual Donors.

Watch our two-part video on the 2013 Summer High School Research Internship program:

On August 27, 2013, a convocation was held at PHRI Center where the students presented their projects and received their participating certificats.


On September 23, 2013, the PHRI Summer 2013 Interns presented their poster projects at the North Jersey Branch of the American Chemical Society's annual ACS Project SEED poster competition held at Seton Hall University, in South Orange, NJ. Twelve of the 13 summer 2013 interns exhibited their posters, each of which was evaluated by at least 3 judges. There were a total of 107 posters judged, and the PHRI summer interns did very well, as they usually do in these symposia. They obtained 8 first place ribbons, Wesley Colon, Ramani Dayon, Demetrius Beckham, Wallis Muraca, Chinedum Nwaigwe, Sofia Ribeiro, Victoria Ribeiro and Mike Salas; 2 second place ribbons, Chioma Onwunaka and Jenell Good, and 2 third place ribbons, Laura Rivera and Ranelle Tulloch.

Students In addition to the ACS Project SEED poster competition, Chinedum and Janell presented posters on their summer projects at the 5th annual symposium of the Garden State-Louis Stokes Association for Minority Participation (GS-LSAMP). This event, held on Friday, October 11, at the Rutgers-New Brunswick campus, showcased the research experiences of the approximately 2500 LSAMP scholars in New Jersey. The program is for minority university students to expose and prepare them for careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (PHRI is part of this program and 3 LSAMP scholars worked in PHRI labs this past summer). Approximately 70 posters were presented by the LSAMP students and by Chinedum and Janell. The posters were of generally high quality, and out of the 70, 10 were picked for their excellence. One of the 10 posters chosen was Chinedum's.

Dr. Juan Robles' Story

Dr. Juan Robles is featured in a video narrated by the actor Al Pacino.

To view the video, click here.

StudentsPHRI has a special relationship with Juan. He was a participant in the PHRI Summer High School Research Trainee Program (PHRI-SHSRTP) and as an undergraduate at Cornell University, he spent several years as teaching assistant in this program. After completing his BA degree, he worked for several years as a research associate in the laboratory of Dr. David Perlin, the director of PHRI. Juan obtained his masters degree from NYU and then taught high school in the Bronx before being admitted as a medical student to the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. He now practices medicine in the Bronx, New York City. Juan Robles' success story is a prime example of what a determined, capable student can do with the assistance of programs like the PHRI-SHSRTP, which help shaped his future. We are very proud of Juan and the other graduates of the program.

In 2004, PHRI distributed a newsletter with an article about Juan. A script of the article can be downloaded as PDF copy.

Issar Smith, Ph.D
Associate Director for Programs and Development

Alumni News

August 2014

1.  Ming Rong Weng (PHRI 2006) In February 2014, Ming Weng, was appointed as NYU Abu Dhabi Outreach Officer at the Institute of International Education in the Chaoyang District, Beijing, China.

2.  Anisha Boucher (PHRI 2010) has been awarded a research fellowship by the McNair Scholars Program at the University of Delaware to conduct research on "Residential Segregation in Detroit, MI." Anisha is a student in the Department of Criminal Justice and Sociology at the University of Delaware.

3.  Hannah Delos Reyes (PHRI 2011,'12) This summer 2014, Hannah was awarded a Douglass Residential College for Women Summer Stipend to conduct research with Professor Nicole Fahrenfeld of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rutgers-New Brunswick. She is an undergraduate student in a work-study program with Dr. Terry Kinzey in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, at Rutgers-New Brunswick. Her project was based upon the special skills she acquired during her summer internship at PHRI.

4.  Tamara Adebanjo (PHRI 2008 and TA 2011) Graduated from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey-New Brunswick with a Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.Sc.), in Industrial & Systems Engineering and was hired in June 2014 as a I&O Analyst (Junior QA Engineer) by ADP, a capital management company.

July 2014

Demetrius Beckham, PHRI 2013 Alumnus, competed in the NAACP Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics (ACT-SO) in Las Vegas, NV. Demetrius placed 2nd out of the 19 national finalists in the field of Medicine and Health, having placed 1st in New Jersey this past Spring 2014. He received the silver medal for his presentation on the “Effect of transcription complex facilitators on lethal stress.” He worked on this project with Xilin Zhao, Ph.D. and Muhammed Malik, Ph.D. at PHRI during the summer of 2013. Demetrius will attend New York University in the fall of 2014.

July 2014

Denise Bion, PHRI 2010 Alumna, represented Team USA and competed in the WEKAF (World Eskrima-Kali-Arnis Federation) 2014 World Championship in Hungary. She earned the silver medal. Denise is currently attending Rutgers University School of Engineering as a Material Science and Engineering major.

May 2014

Rhayven Bell, PHRI 2010 Alumna, is an intern at the Cardiovascular Research Institute (Department of Physiology) at the University of Louisville. Rhayven is currently attending Hampton Univeristy in Virginia as a Biology major.

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