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UT Tyler Biology Major Selected for National Internship

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October 11, 2018

Media Contact: Beverley Golden
Agency Director
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler

The University of Texas at Tyler announced that biology senior Alyssa Blanton was one of 20 students selected nationwide for an internship with Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long Island, New York.

Blanton recently joined other science, technology, engineering and mathematics undergraduates in a three-week scientific computing skills internship funded by the National Science Foundation's Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation program, which is designed to prepare students from underrepresented populations for STEM careers.

Participants were selected based on their performance on an analytical aptitude test, past involvement in LSAMP research and letters of recommendation. Blanton has assisted Dr. Joshua Banta, UT Tyler assistant professor of biology, in plant genomics research since 2016 and participated in the 2017 UT System LSAMP summer research program under Banta's mentorship.

"We were very excited for Alyssa to be selected for the internship at Brookhaven, which is a very prestigious, well-funded federal research laboratory,'' said Banta, who recommended Blanton for the internship. "Alyssa is a very dedicated, hard-working and talented student, and I knew she would be perfect for the Brookhaven program,'' he said. "With the skills she has developed as a research assistant, LSAMP participant and Brookhaven intern, she is competitive for acceptance into an M.D./Ph.D. program to prepare for a career in medicine and research.''

The internship was designed to teach computer programming to student researchers, said Blanton, who will graduate from UT Tyler this fall and plans to attend medical school. "I have enjoyed working in research with Dr. Banta and welcomed the opportunity to intern at Brookhaven and learn new skills in computational research,'' the Whitehouse resident said.

A member of the prestigious UT System, The University of Texas at Tyler focuses on student success and innovative research in the more than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs offered. With more than 10,000 students, UT Tyler has facilities in Tyler, Longview, Palestine and Houston.

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