Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Next Penn Science Group meeting will be on Tuesday, April 30th from 5:30-7pm in 1412 BRB.
Come hear about all the recent advocacy efforts by the Advocacy Subgroup!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Penn Science Policy Group at the Symposium!

For this year's Penn Science Research Symposium, the Penn Science Policy group decided to have an active presence at the event. With the help of Sima Patel and Mike Allegrezza, a poster was quickly constructed to highlight the group's activities along with the recent DC Advocacy Day.  Folks like Chris Yarosh (pictured), were generous enough to man the poster during the poster session and field questions.

Mike also played a pivotal role in introducing the poster to staffers from Sen. Toomey and Sen. Casey's office. This was done so these staffers would now be aware of the  group's presence on campus and to help set up networking events in the future.  Mike also showcased some of the other posters to the staffers to help demonstrate how NIH dollars are being used for the development of new treatments such diseases like Alzheimer's and cancer.

Another highlight of the Symposium was  having House Rep. Chaka Fattah deliver closing remarks. Rep. Fattah really urged the crowd to get the word out about the latest in scientific progress at Penn-and that type of information would be sure to hit the walls of Congress. Pictured below is House Rep. Fattah at the conclusion of his speech, shaking hands with Shaun.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Rally for Medical Research

Check out our group at the Rally for Medical Research! (L-R), Mahlet Abera, Unknown, Mike Askenase, Mat Wimmer, David Reiner, Wade Hayes, Jenessa Smyth, Lindsay Foresee, Mike Convente, Joe Jordan, Chris Yarosh, Erika Hendel, Skye Geherin, Kevin Yu, Serena Dollive, Shaun O'Brien and Julie Crudele

The DP has a great recap of the latest Rally for Medical Research Hill Day which occurred in late September. UPenn students and postdocs made the trip down to DC to make the case for biomedical research funding to Congress and their staff. We were joined by other scientists, physicians, patients and patient advocates who helped get the message out that deep arbitrary cuts to basic scientific research funding is a short-sighted and ineffectual solution to the country's fiscal problems.

The Daily Pennsylvanian :: Students lobby legislators for science funding

PSPG looking snazzy on the bus to DC
Recap of visit with Rep. Charles Dent (R-15 PA) by Jenessa Smith

Charles Dent (R)
15th District PA Congressman

The meeting with Representative Dent’s staffer Lauren Kent –Stevens went very well. She was receptive to our messages of urging Rep. Dent to continue his commitment to prioritizing the NIH. She reiterated that Rep. Dent is a member of the appropriation committee that allocates funding for agencies such as the NIH and that although he cannot sign HR1301 to send to himself, he would respond favorably to the measure once it reaches his committee. In addition, Ms. Kent informed us that Rep. Dent co-chairs the House ethics committee, which informs a bipartisan group of representatives about novel and exciting research by inviting scientists and innovators to speak at meetings. Ms. Kent was interested in our research and about the grant finding and application process. Finally, Ms. Kent urged us to reach out to state legislators that do not see the importance of NIH funding in their states, simply because they may not receive NIH funding to institutions or companies in their respective states or districts. She wanted us to inform people that NIH funding has provided us with many life-saving treatments and techniques that would not be available today with support from the NIH. In all, it was a productive meeting and we left our message to reverse the sequester-enforced NIH budget cuts and that NIH budget must increase in the future.    
Check out the recap of our visit to DC for the Rally For Medical Research and our staff visits in the Daily Penn article-