2021 Merck Research Award for Underrepresented Chemists of Color

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Bernardo Salvador

Graduate student Salvador Bernardino (Harran lab) is one of 12 chemists from around the nation selected for the inaugural Merck Chemists of Color Award.

This award recognizes underrepresented chemistry Ph.D. students (3rd year and above) and postdocs. Recipients are given the opportunity to work with a Merck mentor and networking opportunities, as well as travel funds to attend the 2021 Merck Award Symposium, where they will present their research.

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About Salvador Bernardino

Salvador is a Stockton, CA native and graduated from UC Davis in 2017 before attending UCLA’s chemistry graduate program. He is currently a rising 5th year graduate student in Professor Patrick Harran’s lab working on the synthesis of novel peptidomimetic macrocycles and polycycles. Since the beginning of his academic career, Salvador has been involved in various outreach and mentorship programs. This includes leading chemistry “magic” shows through demonstrations at local schools and community events. Salvador attributes much of his success and interest in science/research to mentors that have provided invaluable advice and guidance. He currently provides mentorship to other students from various backgrounds following the STEM path and expects to continue doing so in the future. 

About the Merck Research Award for Underrepresented Chemists of Color

The recipients of this Merck Award are selected based on their research accomplishments as well as other factors, including a clear vision for how the award would impact their career and enable them to give back to their community to help fellow underrepresented individuals, an appreciation for how the program would help them despite challenges they faced as a person of color, and their demonstrated potential to become research pioneers and scientific innovators. To apply or for more information on the Merck Research Award for Underrepresented Chemists of Color please email chemistsofcolor@merck.com.

Penny Jennings, UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, penny@chem.ucla.edu.