Sep 14, 2018
Professor Richard Cross
In honor of his former postdoctoral mentor, SUNY Professor Richard Cross has established the Paul Boyer and Rich Cross Undergraduate Summer Fellowship Fund.
 
Dr. Richard "Rich" Cross, a SUNY distinguished professor emeritus of biochemistry and molecular biology at Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, New York, was a postdoctoral fellow in the late Professor Paul Boyer's lab at UCLA from 1970 to 1973. His moving tribute to Boyer (pictured right) was published in the August 3, 2018, issue of Nature.
 
Cross' donation of $25,000, when matched by the department, will provide $50,000 to fund fellowships for select UCLA undergraduate biochemistry majors performing summer research in UCLA Chemistry & Biochemistry faculty labs.
 
"I know firsthand how important such a program can be for your career. Between my junior and senior year at a small liberal arts college, I was offered a research fellowship to work at the University of Rochester near my parent's home" said Cross. "That summer I studied di- and tri-valent cation complexes with ATP, correlating the different structures with different rates of increase in cleavage of the beta-gamma phosphoric acid anhydride bond. We published our results in the J. Amer. Chem. Soc. That publication was probably important in my gaining acceptance to Yale for graduate school. Also, when I arrived there, I decided that since I already knew something about cleaving ATP, it would be interesting to study how ATP is made. So, that summer fellowship sent me on a quest that would lead me to Paul's lab and keep me busy for the rest of my career."
 
"This very generous gift from Rich provides a terrific boost to our summer research fellowship program", said Department Chair Catherine F. Clarke. "We have ~1000 undergraduate biochemistry majors here in our department, and every summer there are very talented students who apply for a limited number of summer research fellowships. Just as Professor Cross described, summer research experiences can be transformative, and lead students to consider research as a career."