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Black serves summer internship with GlaxoSmithKline

Black (left) with Lisa Ponton, an assistant professor of chemistry at Elon and Black's academic adviser.

Rising senior Ashley Black recently completed a summer internship with GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals at the company's Research Triangle Park headquarters. Black was one of eight college and university students chosen for the program, and she is the first Elon student to participate in the program's 15-year history.

Ashley was nominated for the program by two professors in the science department. After completing an essay and landing a face-to-face interview, Ashley was selected to represent Elon. During her internship, Ashley worked 40 hours a week with an organic synthesis chemist, senior scientist Hari Patel. The team conducted structure activity relationship (SAR) analysis on a series of molecules that could act as a potential diabetes treatment.

“Working with GSK has definitely given me industrial chemistry experience which is very different from what you can get in a school setting,” says Black. “I’ve also gained an inside look into what pharmaceutical company’s look like and how they run.”

GSK supports a Women in Science scholarship at Elon, an endowment that the company generously doubled last year. Two students each year receive scholarship support for their studies and are  paired with a GSK researcher who serves as a mentor. Ashely's GSK academic mentor, who also assisted with her summer internship, is senior scientist Melissa Gomez, a specialist in analytical chemistry.

Ashley Black (left) with GSK academic mentor Melissa Gomez.

Larry Vellani,
9/7/2007 10:45 AM