Oklahoma Baptist University student Austin Lopez of Tulsa with her Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation mentor, physician-scientist Matlock Jeffries, M.D.

The Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation is accepting applications for its 2024 Sir Alexander Fleming Scholar Program. The deadline is Feb. 1.
The paid, eight-week summer biomedical research internship is open to high school seniors, college freshmen, sophomores and juniors. To be eligible, students must be 16 or older and an Oklahoma resident at the time of high school graduation. Participants earn $5,000 and may also qualify for free housing.
Applicants must complete an online application and submit their academic transcripts, two letters of recommendation and a personal statement.
“This is an incredible experience for students who are excited about science and want to get some meaningful, hands-on research experience,” said Ashley Cheyney, Ph.D., OMRF’s assistant director of training programs and educational outreach. “Being a Fleming Scholar provides the opportunity to make lifelong connections and contribute to work that makes a difference.”
For Makayla Tillett, a junior at Oklahoma City University majoring in cell and molecular biology, serving as a Fleming Scholar last summer provided an introduction to a career in biomedical research. Tillett made proteins in the lab of OMRF scientist Umesh Deshmukh, Ph.D., who investigates how viruses and bacteria can activate the immune system, leading to the development of an autoimmune condition called Sjögren’s disease.
“My original plan included medical school, but I learned that I really enjoy doing biomedical research, so now I plan to pursue a Ph.D. following my undergraduate studies,” said Tillett, who returned to OMRF this fall to continue her work in Deshmukh’s lab.
Founded in 1956 and named for Sir Alexander Fleming, the Nobel Prize-winning scientist who discovered penicillin and in 1949 dedicated OMRF’s first building, the program offers students a summer packed with hands-on biomedical research.
Since its inception, more than 600 Oklahoma students have had the opportunity to work alongside world-class scientists at OMRF. Among those whose research careers began as Fleming Scholars are OMRF Executive Vice President & Chief Medical Officer Judith James, M.D., Ph.D., and Distinguished Career Scientist Rod McEver, M.D.
For more information or to apply, CLICK HERE.