CSU–Pueblo bridge project brings provides link for transfers

The Puente Project: Bridges to Biomedical Careers program will resume this summer at Colorado State University-Pueblo to provide academic skills and research experiences for community college students interested in continuing their training at a four-year institution.

The six-week course promotes the pursuit of careers that include biomedical research. Students will receive laboratory techniques and skill training in cell biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics, and other areas of scientific research.

The non-residential program runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 25 - July 3. Attendees will be compensated ($1,920) for their time and participation.

Details and application materials are available at http://faculty.colostate-pueblo.edu/leeanne.martinez/Puente_Project_09.html

While designed to target members of groups traditionally underrepresented in the sciences and engineering (Hispanics, Native Americans - including Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians-, African Americans), the program welcomes applications from all students who feel that they would benefit from this program. Applications are due by Friday, April 24, 2009. Applicants will be reviewed on a rolling basis starting April 3, with student notification of acceptance to occur between April 6-26.

For more information, contact LeeAnne Martinez, program director, at 719-549-2744 or leeanne.martinez@colostate-pueblo.edu

The Bridges Program has produced numerous success stories among its graduates. For example, Rosemary Martinez Townsend, who completed her associate’s degree at Pueblo Community College (PCC) and earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from CSU-Pueblo in 2007, is completing work on a master's degree at CSU-Pueblo doing research on the DNA of nematode worms that parasitize bighorn sheep. She intends to pursue a Ph.D. at Colorado State University-Fort Collins.

“We find that participation in the Bridges Program is a big confidence builder for the students,” Martinez said. “They not only get hands-on research experience, but they get to know our College of Science and Mathematics faculty and the exciting research projects being conducted at the University. These students then are able to go far with their newfound ambition.”

Another PCC student, Daniella Chavez Boyer was accepted into medical school at Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences after earning the Houston Simms Award in 2007 as the top graduating senior in the biology department at CSU-Pueblo.

Jason Commander, who transferred from Trinidad State Junior College, has conducted biochemistry research at CSU-Pueblo and will earn his bachelor’s degree in chemistry on May 2.

Pikes Peak Community College (PPCC) graduate Russell Garcia is now enrolled at the CU Health Sciences Center in Denver, while PCC graduate Michaela Ponce is researching marine mammals in pursuit of a bachelor’s degree at the University of Alaska.

Colorado State University - Pueblo is a regional, comprehensive university emphasizing professional, career-oriented, and applied programs. Displaying excellence in teaching, celebrating diversity, and engaging in service and outreach, CSU-Pueblo is distinguished by access, opportunity, and the overall quality of services provided to its students.