July 30, 2014  

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Mississippi INBRE Trains Future Professionals for Community Health Education

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Twenty-two student interns have been training for the past two weeks with the Mississippi IDeA Networks of Biomedical Research Excellence (Mississippi INBRE) program on The University of Southern Mississippi campus. (Submitted photo)

A classroom full of energy and excitement is a rarity during the hot summer months when students would prefer to be sleeping in or out on the beach. Yet, for the past two weeks, 22 student interns with the Mississippi IDeA Networks of Biomedical Research Excellence (Mississippi INBRE) have been eagerly attending training sessions before they begin work throughout the community.

These students are participating in the Mississippi INBRE Service Scholars Program. The program, in conjunction with My Brother’s Keeper, Inc. out of Jackson, Miss., trains students throughout the summer as they engage their communities in health education and intervention practices.

“The community outreach program has been a great learning experience for the students as they are gaining extensive knowledge regarding public health and many have decided or confirmed their decisions to pursue careers in the health related fields,” said Arlicia Jordan, community outreach coordinator for Mississippi INBRE.

The summer interns come from colleges across the state such as Tougaloo College, Alcorn State University, Mississippi University for Women, Mississippi State University, and Jackson State University. Students are chosen based on academics and are studying bio-medical related programs.

Jordan added, “Not only are students being educated on public health, My Brother’s Keeper is also training them in HIV testing, prevention counseling and CPR — all skills that will be beneficial to them as future health care professionals.”

Antwan Nicholson, training program manager with My Brother’s Keeper, Inc. has been working closely with these students and has seen the impact this program has already made on the students and the difference these students could make in the future of Mississippi.

“The Service Scholars Program has been an intensive learning experience for the interns so far. It is our goal as an organization to assist in the development of the interns because they are our future leaders of tomorrow,” said Nicholson.

Mississippi INBRE, directed by Dr. Mohamed Elasri, a professor at The University of Southern Mississippi, is a statewide program supported by an award from the National Institutes of General Medical Sciences. Its mission is to enhance the biomedical foundation in Mississippi and to reach out to Mississippians in order to improve health throughout the state.

Mississippi INBRE seeks to engage talented researchers and students in biomedical research projects that will increase the state’s research competitiveness as well as impact the health of citizens of Mississippi.

For more information about Mississippi INBRE, visit: msinbre.org.