Pharmacy Student Nabs NIH Research Funding

A University of Montana pharmacy student has been awarded an undergraduate diversity student supplement from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences that will allow her to study dendritic cells.

A University of Montana pharmacy student has been awarded an undergraduate diversity student supplement from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences that will allow her to study dendritic cells.

Shelby Cole will study the cells for the next 2.5 years alongside professor David Shepherd and his team, which is working to develop drugs to help control immune functions, according to the school’s press release.

“I'll be doing my own project while also contributing as a member of the lab,” Cole stated in the school’s release. “I'm very excited to make new discoveries especially if they lead to new ways to help people with immune-related diseases. I just really love doing research. It’s extremely rewarding—even the tedious parts.”

Cole’s professor described her as bright, highly motivated, and hardworking. He was the one to introduce her to the idea of research as another option besides working for her local Indian Health Services.

After finding an interest in research, Shepard advised Cole that she might want to consider applying for the student supplement for funding, the school release stated.

Cole’s grant will go toward work in the lab, travel expenses related to conferences where she will present her research, and an immunology class this summer.

She credited her grandmother for originally pushing her into the field.

“She is the one that has always pushed me to go to pharmacy school,” Cole said in the press release. “She was definitely really excited when I told her I was doing research, probably the most excited out of my family.”