Public Release:  Merck and AAAS announce 2009 winners of outstanding undergraduate research programs

American Association for the Advancement of Science

Fourteen colleges and universities have been selected for awards from the Merck/AAAS Undergraduate Science Research Program. Sponsored by the Merck Institute for Science Education (MISE) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the program awards provide up to $60,000, paid over three years, for use by the biology and chemistry departments at the recipient institution.

This year's winners are: Harvey Mudd College, University of Wisconsin at Whitewater, Otterbein College, Bowdoin College, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, Ashland University, Siena College, Kean University, Furman University, Lebanon Valley College, Niagara University, University of West Florida, State University of New York at New Paltz, and Colorado College.

Since 1994, the Merck/AAAS Undergraduate Science Research Program (USRP) has awarded grants to support undergraduate interdisciplinary research in the sciences. The program, funded by MISE and administered by AAAS, was a pioneer in designing a grant program that focused on interdisciplinary collaboration in biology and chemistry at primarily undergraduate institutions. USRP grants have been awarded to more than 200 colleges and universities and have supported more than 2,000 undergraduates, providing them the opportunity to work with and learn from faculty in the laboratory and engage in basic research.

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The Merck Institute for Science Education is a tax-exempt private foundation established in 1993 to improve science education in the public schools. Now expanded to include college and graduate-level education, MISE (www.mise.org) works to build capacity in the biomedical sciences through partnerships with education institutions.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is the world's largest general scientific society, and publisher of the journal, Science (www.sciencemag.org). AAAS was founded in 1848, and serves 262 affiliated societies and academies of science, reaching 10 million individuals. Science has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world, with an estimated total readership of 1 million. The non-profit AAAS (www.aaas.org) is open to all and fulfills its mission to "advance science and serve society" through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education and more. For the latest research news, log onto EurekAlert!, www.eurekalert.org, the premier science-news Web site, a service of AAAS.

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