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RISE 2023 Symposium

Person Presenting at a Symposium

Join us at our 2023 Symposium and Poster Session to celebrate the outstanding accomplishments of our Summer Scholars. Following an inspirational plenary speaker, meet the students at their posters and learn about the research they have done under the guidance of carefully-matched Rutgers faculty mentors. Our 58 participants represent 46 sending schools from 23 U.S. states and territories. 


Date: Wednesday, August 2, 2023
Time: 9 am – 2 pm
Livingston Student Center, 1st Floor


View our Event Flyer




Time Program Name Presenter
9 – 9:30 AM Coffee and registration
9:30 – 9:40 AM Welcome Dr. Evelyn Erenrich
Associate Dean, School of Graduate Studies and Director, RISE at Rutgers
9:40 – 9:50 AM Winners, 5 Minute Presentation (5MP) Competition

Erica Acox, The Effect of Genetic Polymorphisms of Efflux Transporters on Heavy Metal Toxicity.

Angel Beebe, Tracking Environmental Toxic Exposure Using Silicone Wristbands as Passive Dosimeters.

9:50 AM Introduction of Keynote Speaker Prof. Jeffrey Robinson, Provost, Rutgers-Newark & Prudential Chair, Rutgers School of Business
9:50 – 10:45 AM Keynote Address Dr. Chinonye (Chi-Chi) Whitley, Program Officer, National Science Foundation EPSCoR*, “Making the World Your Oyster Through a Career in STEM.”
10:45 AM Concluding remarks to Plenary Dr. Anna Branch, Senior Vice President for Equity and Professor of Sociology
11 – 11:55 AM Scholar Research Posters – Odd numbers
12-12:55 PM Scholar Research Posters – Even numbers
1:00 PM Networking Buffet Luncheon Congratulatory remarks, Dr. Carolyn Moehling, Vice Provost of Undergraduate Education

Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education & Professor of Economics


 * Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR)

View our posters and video presentations


Event Parking for the RISE/REU Symposium

Guests attending the RISE/REU Symposium must register their vehicles at RISE/REU Symposium

All guests must register their vehiclea and park in lots Green & Yellow to avoid receiving a citation.  Faculty, staff and students must park in authorized parking locations according to their permit and should not register under the special event parking.

Poster Locations and Project Abstracts

View our Presenter List for 2023.


More About RISE

RISE (Research Intensive Summer Experience) at Rutgers seeks to pave the pathway to graduate study and research careers. We particularly encourage participation by underrepresented minority, disadvantaged, and first-generation college students, individuals with disabilities and who have faced life challenges, as well as students from Predominantly Undergraduate Institutions.

2023 marks our 23rd anniversary! RISE and its partner programs are hosting 58 Scholars, selected from over 1000 applicants. The Scholars represent 46 sending schools from 23 U.S. states and territories. They have spent 10 weeks actively engaged in research and scholarship under the guidance of matched Rutgers faculty mentors and graduate student or postdoctoral near-peers.  A rigorous suite of professional development activities complements the research, including scholarly writing and speaking, preparation for graduate school, responsible conduct of research and ethics, field trips, and GRE preparation. Lunch and Learn seminars spotlight a broad scope of research at Rutgerss.

To learn more, visit




RISE Partner Programs at Rutgers:

  • REU in Cellular Bioengineering
  • REU in Advanced Materials
  • Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF)
  • RCSB Protein Data Bank
  • Waksman Institute of Microbiology

School/Unit Collaborators:

  • School of Arts and Sciences
  • School of Engineering
  • School of Environmental and Biological Sciences
  • Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy
  • Biomedical & Health Sciences – Robert Wood Johnson Medical School


More about our Keynote Speaker

We are excited to welcome Dr. Chinonye (Chi-Chi) Nnakwe Whitley, who will deliver a talk, “Making the World Your Oyster through a Career in STEM.” Dr. Whitley, a molecular biologist, is currently the Program Officer for the Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) at the National Science Foundation. At NSF, she manages a $113 million portfolio of 38 grants and cooperative agreements that focus on building basic science research infrastructure, promoting economic development, and broadening participation in STEM. Learn more about Dr. Whitley here.



AcknowledgementsLab Work

We gratefully acknowledge financial support from:
Institutional sources:

  • School of Graduate Studies
  • Waksman Institute of Microbiology
  • Protein Data Bank


  • Aman Armaan Ahmed Family
  • NASA New Jersey Space Grant Consortium
  • RenewCO2
  • NIH MARC and U-RISE Programs
  • NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program
  • Faculty cost-share from NSF CAREER Awards and other research grants
  • Kean University Office of the Provost
  • Society of Toxicology
  • Farmingdale State College

Vanessa In labOur research program would not be possible without the support of the dedicated faculty members who have donated their time, energy, and laboratory supplies and space. We are also grateful for the financial support that some faculty mentors provided through research grants or supplements. In addition, we thank the graduate students and postdoctoral near-peer mentors for their invaluable guidance and commitment.

Our program comes together only through the dedication and countless hours of hard work on the part of the Program Directors and staff, acknowledged with deep gratitude.

We thank University Libraries for their help designing and hosting this site and for maintaining a digital archive of posters and video presentations.


Past years’ exhibits

To visit the 2022, 2021 and 2020 Symposia pages, please select from the links below: