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Students invited to explore careers in science

Dec. 3, 2006

KALAMAZOO--Three recent alumni and two area life sciences firms will join forces with Western Michigan University's Department of Chemistry to put the focus on science careers during a special Wednesday, Dec. 6, event on campus.

The event, which will be held from noon to 3 p.m. in Room 208 of the Bernhard Center, is open to all students and no reservations are required. A casual luncheon will be served, courtesy of sponsors Proteos Inc. and MPI Research, and the afternoon's activities will focus on career possibilities in science fields.

A highlight of the event will be presentations by three recent WMU graduates who have gone on to early career success.

Warren Manyara, a 2003 alumnus who majored in biomedical sciences, is now a third-year medical student at the University of Minnesota.

Amanda Frick, who left WMU in 2002 with a degree in biology, is employed by Agdia Inc., a manufacturer of agricultural diagnostics in Elkhart, Ind.

Alene Haley is a physician assistant in Royal Oak, Mich. She earned her bachelor's degree in biomedical science in 2003 and a master's degree in physician assistant in 2005, both from WMU.

The event organizer is Dr. David L. Huffman, assistant professor of chemistry, who is in his sixth year as a WMU faculty member. He says he routinely sees students in the early stages of their career choices and he wanted to help provide some direction and support. The three returning alumni were all students in one of his classes.

"These are three young people who struggled just a few years ago with the same decisions my students today face," he says. "I thought it would be helpful for current students to get a better idea of the range of options out there and hear from some people who faced the same decisions and are on their way to successful careers. While I was planning the event, Proteos and MPI contacted me and said they wanted to be involved as well."

Proteos is a successful life sciences startup in the Southwest Michigan Innovation Center. It provides protein synthesis work to other pharmaceutical companies. MPI Research of Mattawan, Mich., focuses on the nonclinical research needs of the pharmaceutical, biotech, chemical, agricultural and related industries.

For more information about the event, contact Dr. David Huffman at (269) 387-2865.

Media contact: Cheryl Roland, (269) 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

WMU News
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