Christina Vicidomini, a 2013 graduate of the Macaulay Honors College at the College of Staten Island (CSI), has earned a prestigious Jonas Salk Scholarship. Vicidomini earned one of only eight coveted awards presented to CUNY students annually. The award will provide $8,000 to apply toward medical school tuition.
The Salk program was created in 1955 to honor Dr. Jonas E. Salk, the 1934 graduate of City College who discovered the polio vaccine. Highly selective, the Salk Scholarship identifies students entering the fields of medicine and the biological sciences who are most likely to make an impact on medicine and research.
Vicidomini majored in Psychology at CSI with a particular interest in the study of the nervous system. She served as a research assistant on a project investigating behaviorally relevant changes in brain development following prenatal hypothyroidism in rats. She spent time at both CSI and the New York State Institute for Basic Research in Developmental Disabilities to complete this project.
“Ultimately, my strong work ethic comes from my self-sufficiency and determination to achieve a goal. As the first person in my family to further my education after high school, I have learned to become very independent in my studies, and also about the true definition of hard work,” said Vicidomini. “In doing so, I have developed crucial traits of commitment and stamina that I will carry over into my training, and ultimately my career.”
“Christina’s passion for research and unfailing work ethic led her to become an exemplary Macaulay Scholar,” says Lisa French, Macaulay’s Associate Director and Advisor at CSI. “She is a source of inspiration for many of her classmates.”
“Working in a lab as an undergraduate has given me invaluable skills and knowledge and has helped me to prepare for a career in medicine,” adds Vicidomini. I was able to present my work at an undergraduate research conference at the College last spring, and will be credited as a co-author of papers that are published on this research in the future. The staff of Macaulay has advised, prepared, and encouraged me in a very individualized manner, and I can truly say that I have benefited from the opportunities and advantages of this esteemed program.’
Vicidomini will be attending New York Institute of Technology – College of Osteopathic Medicine. The first person in her family to pursue a higher education, Christina Vicidomini is a psychology major who intends to research neuroscience in her medical studies. She traces her curiosity in how the brain impacts the rest of the body to a six-year stint working in a Brooklyn pastry shop, noting the array of psychological traits among the customers. She honed her clinical skills as a medical assistant and volunteer in hospital and private office settings.
About College of Staten Island
The College of Staten Island is a senior college of The City University of New York (CUNY) offering associates, bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees. CSI is home to a School of Business, School of Education, School of Health Sciences, The Verrazano School Honors Program, the Teacher Education Honors Academy, and is a select campus of the Macaulay Honors College University Scholars program. For more information, visit csi.cuny.edu
About Macaulay Honors College
Macaulay Honors College at The City University of New York offers exceptional students a uniquely personalized education with access to the vast resources of the nation’s largest urban university and New York City itself. Selected for their top high school records and leadership potential, Macaulay students receive a full-tuition scholarship, a laptop and technology support, and an Opportunities Fund to pursue global learning and service opportunities. Macaulay students enroll in one of eight CUNY senior colleges (Baruch, Brooklyn, City, Hunter, John Jay, Lehman, Queens and Staten Island). For more information, see macaulay.cuny.edu