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ABRCMS Alumni Spotlight: Joel Encarnación-Rosado, Ph.D.

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Joel Encarnación Rosado PhJoel Encarnacion-Rosado is a Ph.D. candidate and HHMI Gilliam fellow at the New York University Grossman School of Medicine, conducting his research in Dr. Alec Kimmelman's lab. Joel obtained his BS at the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras Campus, where he was a RISE and MARC fellow.

What was one of the low points or challenges in your scientific journey, and what helped you? What advice do you have for others?

One of the significant challenges I faced in my scientific journey was when I applied to graduate school for the first time. I used multiple schools and received zero offers. At first, I felt lost and devastated because I was unsure what to do. Fortunately, I could apply and get accepted into the PREP NIH at Case Western. There, I was able to improve my applications and get some extra time to further my scientific training. Most importantly, the PREP gap year was pivotal to regaining the confidence I lost after being rejected from my first round of applications to graduate school. To people that are in this position, I always encourage them to:

  1. Be kind to yourself.
  2. Look for mentors who care about you and believe in your potential
  3. Find a community and a support system

What is something about science or your current work that you find fascinating or motivating?

My research focuses on the metabolism of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), a highly aggressive type of cancer that has a 5-year overall survival rate of ~11%. Specifically, my research aims to identify and target metabolic vulnerabilities in PDAC, which could help identify new therapeutic approaches for the disease. The fact that we can provide novel insights at the molecular level that could translate to improving therapeutic and diagnostic approaches is fascinating.

Last modified onMonday, 26 September 2022 19:54

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