While it is often overlooked, the ability to produce original research is key to a doctor’s ability to care for patients. On Thursday, the MU School of Medicine showcased its students who conduct research long before they become practicing physicians.
A small group of MU medical students displayed their original research projects at the school of medicine’s annual Research Day.
The medical and nursing students were chosen from a pool of applicants last spring. They were given a stipend from the university to stay in Columbia over the summer and work directly with a faculty member on a project.
Bill Folk, the associate dean for research at MU’s medical school, said that gaining research experience is vital to medical students because it improves their ability to care for patients when they begin practicing medicine.
Sixty-nine students presented projects for judging Thursday, and some will present their findings at future medical events.
Thursday marked the 25th time the event has been held, said Monica Moore, spokeswoman for MU health care. Judges gave awards to the top three participants in two categories: beginning medical students and post-doctoral students.
In the beginning category, first place went to Shazia Bhombal, second to Michael Hughes and third to Scott Schoenleber. In the post-doctoral category, Christopher Winkelmann took first place, Amanda Cully was second and Christopher Johnson third.
As a part of the event, the 2003 Dorsett L. Spurgeon Distinguished Medical Research Award was presented to Lixing Reneker, an assistant professor of ophthalmology and biochemistry at MU. This award is presented annually to an outstanding young faculty member.
Abby Gresla contributed to this report