GSBS’s Powell awarded HOPE Scholarship

Clinical Population and Health Research student honored by Biomedical Science Careers Program

By Sandra Gray

UMass Medical School Communications

May 09, 2014
UMass Medical School graduate student Lauren Powell was awarded a 2014-2015 HOPE Scholarship by the Biomedical Science Careers Program.
UMass Medical School graduate student Lauren Powell was awarded a 2014-2015 HOPE Scholarship by the Biomedical Science Careers Program.

UMass Medical School student Lauren Powell was awarded a 2014-2015 HOPE Scholarship by the Biomedical Science Careers Program. Powell, a candidate for a PhD in clinical and population health research at the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, was honored at the BSCP’s annual “An Evening of Hope” dinner on Thursday, May 1.

HOPE scholarships support highly motivated and productive New England minority students with a demonstrated interest in biomedical, biotechnology or other science-related fields, who have recognized potential and seek opportunities for educational advancement. Powell was one of four honorees who received $7,500 for education expenses. Upon completion of her doctoral degree, Powell aspires to work for a federal government agency where she can impact the elimination of health inequities.

“I feel overwhelmingly blessed and humbled to have been chosen for such a prestigious award,” said Powell. “The previous Hope Scholarship recipients have achieved great success and I am honored that BSCP selected me to be among their scholastic company.”  

Following her 2006 graduation from Xavier University with a degree in biochemistry, Powell coordinated clinical research studies at the Johns Hopkins Schools of Medicine and Public Health, the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, and the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health. Now, with mentorship from UMMS faculty Stephenie Lemon, PhD, Milagros Rosal, PhD, and Jeroan Allison, MD, MS, Powell’s research focuses on minority health disparities and the effects of racism on health, the social determinants of health and methods to improve the participation and experiences of African-Americans and Latinos in clinical research studies. In 2013, her first year as a PhD student, she received a National Institutes of Minority Health and Health Disparities grant, her first from the NIH, to investigate methods of improving research literacy in underserved populations.

In addition to her academic pursuits, Powell is an active member of the Worcester community who dedicates much time to volunteer service. She is a member of the Worcester Partnership for Racial and Ethnic Health Equity, and volunteers with Mosaic Cultural Complex, an organization that provides health screenings and education to men of color in African American and Latino barbershops. In 2013 she was awarded a Albert Schweitzer Fellowshipfor her work with Mosaic.

“The friends, mentors, and connections I have made through BSCP have been invaluable to me, and contributed greatly to the success I have had as a graduate student thus far,” said Powell. “I very much look forward to paying forward the resources BSCP has invested in me to future generations of biomedical science students.”

Related links on UMassMedNow:
‘Barbershop Conversations’ targets health disparities: Schweitzer fellow Lauren Powell strives to narrow health care gaps for men of color
Powell and Randall named Schweitzer Fellows
Djade Soumana awarded NIH grant and HOPE Scholarship
Students awarded HOPE Scholarships
GSBS PhD student Charisa Cottonham profiled in Young Scientist