Amgen Scholars

Meet Hamed Mirzaei, Ph.D., a Regional Medical Liaison in Oncology at Amgen

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Amgen Facility: San Francisco, CA

Department: Regional Medical Liaison in Oncology

Unique Journey to a Career in Biotech 

Talent is Universal – Opportunity is Not

Written by Scott Heimlich, Vice President, Amgen Foundation
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So true. This point was eloquently driven home by the story of the eight-year-old homeless refugee who just won the New York State Chess Championship.

We need to discover and develop and harness talent, wherever it may be. And this is not happening, not in the world of chess, and not in the world of science. John Gardner aptly stated the potential when he wrote about the release of human possibilities in his wisdom-filled book On Leadership:

Reflections From South by Southwest (SXSW) EDU 2019

Written by Scott Heimlich, Vice President, Amgen Foundation
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Day 1 (March 4, 2019)

First off, a thank you to the Lemelson Foundation for inviting me to speak at their session tomorrow on A New Paradigm for Tomorrow’s Workforce. I look forward to joining my fellow panelists from Lemelson, the Digital Harbor Foundation, McKay High School, and MIT to discuss this important issue. 

Climbing a Ladder of Success to a Biotech Research Career

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For Saira Sakalaš, learning she was selected as an Amgen Scholar last year was the beginning of a new chapter in her life. She says she will never forget the moment she got an email from the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden offering her the fellowship.

Taking a Medical Research Path to Entrepreneurship

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In second grade, when asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, Timothy Day said: “a chemist who would try to cure cancer.” He wasn’t too far off the mark. Two decades later, with biochemistry, microbiology, and neuroscience degrees in hand, Amgen Scholar alumnus Day has started his own company to to develop gene therapies for intestinal and systemic diseases.

Seeing the Humanity in Science

Q&A with Rebekah Loving
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This Q&A is part of the Inspiring Islanders series.

ASP: Can you tell me a little bit about your research as an Amgen Scholar?

Loving: During my time as an Amgen Scholar at the UC Berkeley, I have been working with Priya Moorjani’s lab, which focuses on evolutionary biology and population genetics. I have been developing and implementing a pipeline for reliably estimating the germline mutation rate in primates.  

Finding Community Beyond Borders in Science

Q&A with Kristina Folta
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This Q&A is part of the Inspiring Islanders series.

ASP: Can you tell me a little bit about your research as an Amgen Scholar?

A Journey From West Philadelphia to Cambridge in Pursuit of Understanding the Human Brain

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Ask Ivan Simpson-Kent who his early idols were and he would give a surprising response: criminals. This is despite growing up in a dangerous neighborhood in West Philadelphia, where he lived across from drug dealers, often heard gunshots at night, and nearly daily stories of people, mostly youth, getting murdered. “I perceived these criminals as invincible outlaws going against the limits society had placed upon them,” he says.

Meet Amgen Scholars Alumni Joel Orlando Hernández Ramos

“The Amgen Scholars experience gave me the opportunity to have my first ever approach to neuroscience and stem cell culture.”
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Host University: The University of Tokyo
Home University: Tecnológico de Monterrey
Amgen Scholar Year: 2018
Major: Biotechnology
Expected Graduation: December 2019

Journey to Science

How did you become interested in science?

Inspiring Islanders: Crossing an Ocean to Pursue Biotechnology

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At the U.S. Amgen Scholars symposium at UCLA in July, an unexpected reunion occurred. When Janielle Cuala took the stage to explain her summer research at Caltech, Kristina Folta couldn’t believe her eyes: It was a friend of hers from Guam with whom she played rugby. “I was so excited to see someone else coming out of Guam and entering the STEM field,” Folta recalls.

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