Michael is from Wichita, Kansas, where he spent his junior and senior high school years at the Kansas Academy of Mathematics and Science at Fort Hays State University. He graduated from the University of Kansas in May 2017 with a B.S. degree in Biochemistry, earning Departmental Honors. While at KU, Michael joined the laboratory of Dr. John Karanicolas, who became his Beckman Scholars Program mentor. His project in the Karanicolas group centered on identifying small molecules that can rescue the activity of the lac repressor in E. coli in the context of special loss-of-function mutations, through a combined computational and experimental approach.
Michael is currently a student in the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology graduate group at the University of Pennsylvania.
Originally from Lakewood, New York, Aidan moved to Lawrence, Kansas while in high school and is a graduate of Lawrence Free State High School. He graduated from KU in May 2017, earning a B.S. degree in Microbiology with Highest Distinction, University Honors, and Departmental Honors. As a Beckman Scholar, Aidan worked with his mentor, Dr. Scott Hefty, to discover the structure and function of several proteins with unknown function in the Chlamydia trachomatis proteome. C. trachomatis is the leading cause of sexually-transmitted disease in the USA and the primary etiological agent of preventable blindness worldwide. Structural and functional studies of these ‘hypothetical proteins’ will contribute to the overall initiative to better understand the mechanisms of pathogenesis in Chlamydia and develop improved treatment strategies for infection.
Aiden is currently in the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) at the University of Pittsburgh.