"In my lab, research provides new avenues for cancer treatment and meaningful student involvement."—Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences Erik Larson
"Alternative Breaks transformed my life. I learned so much about myself while helping those in need."—Anita Smith '12
"I made it my mission to reach a student who others thought to be unreachable."—Brittany Davidson ’09
Assistant Director, Annual Giving
"In my lab, research provides new avenues for cancer treatment and meaningful student involvement."
Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences Erik Larson envisions a world without cancer. And Illinois State biology students share that vision. Together they are researching how good proteins go bad in an effort to understand how cancers develop.
"Alternative Breaks transformed my life. I learned so much about myself while helping those in need."
Anita Smith didn’t want to spend her spring break on a tropical beach—she wanted to make a difference. She participated in the Alternative Breaks program, traveling everywhere from New Orleans for Katrina clean-up to the Dominican Republic to serve children in an orphanage. Each trip was life changing for Anita and the people she served.
"I made it my mission to reach a student who others thought to be unreachable."
Brittany Davidson ’09 encountered a student who communicated through ‘yes’ or ‘no’ head movements. She observed the student staring at the right answer when multiple answers were displayed. Drawing on her experiences from the Special Education Assistive Technology (SEAT) Center, Brittany used a technique known as eye gaze to enable the student to make life decisions and communicate with others.
"Because of alumni support, I was able to apply for scholarships that helped cover the cost of textbooks."
Tamarra Portis didn’t think she would be able to choose her own study schedule. Not anticipating the cost of textbooks ranging anywhere from $300–$700 a semester, she planned to rely on borrowing books from classmates and Milner Library until a scholarship resolved the problem.