Two ASC students are chosen for prestigious internships

(06-04-2008)

Article by Marni Zabel

The mission for Colorado Alliance for Minority Participation (CO-AMP) is to link diverse students to educational opportunities in science, math, engineering and technology. Kamal Ararso plans to link an entire nation.

This summer, Ararso and Seantay Patterson, juniors at Adams State College, were chosen for summer research internships through CO-AMP, a Colorado State University program. The paid internships are provided by an Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate grant from the National Science Foundation.

According to the website coamp.colostate.edu, the primary goal of CO-AMP is to at least double the number of underrepresented students successfully completing baccalaureate degrees in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) in Colorado and the Four Corners Region.

Recently retired executive director of TRIO Programs Mike Garcia was the CO-AMP site coordinator for Adams State College. "A major component of CO-AMP's effort is to provide opportunities for students to participate in undergraduate research. The experience Seantay and Kamal will receive at CSU as participants of the Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP) will be invaluable. I am happy I was able to assist them in receiving this valuable award."

"One of the reasons I chose these studies, chemistry and biochemistry, are that when I get done with school I want to go back home and help those whom I left behind," Ararso said, "I am sick and tired of corruption in Ethiopian politics and Africa in general and I want to help."

Ararso was born in Ethiopia and grew up in Kenya. He said he came to the US due to civil war and political unrest in Ethiopia. He had to move with his brothers and leave behind his people and his family.

"Kamal is a very hard working and dedicated student," said Dr. Marty Jones, professor of chemistry. "If he doesn't understand he always asks for clarification. Kamal is an engaging young man and I always enjoy visiting with him."

Ararso is the science senator for the Associated Students and Faculty and tutors for Student Support Services. "One of the things I like about Adams State is the people are friendly and the professors are awesome and helpful to me."

"Kamal is a real asset to any organization," said Catalina Bartlett, director of Student Support Services, "He is quite an accomplished young man and works very hard."

With the CO-AMP program, Kamal looks forward to new things: "Since I haven't done any research before, it will be great experience."