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UNF biomedical sciences accelerated program welcomes first scholar

adrianna white headshotAdrianna White, a UNF Hicks Honors College student, is the first scholar to be admitted to the newly created accelerated B.S. to M.S. program in Biology with a concentration in Biomedical Sciences. White will enter the program as an undergraduate senior in the fall. Combining her major in biology with a minor in history, White wants to bring a historical perspective to Biomedical Sciences research.

“It is fitting for Adrianna to be the first student admitted to the new program as she is an exceptional scholar,” said Dr. Jeff Chamberlain, Hicks Honors College dean. “She has a stellar academic record and has presented high-quality projects at numerous conferences. She has also demonstrated outstanding engagement and leadership as a facilitator for the honors first-year experience course and as president of the Honors Student Union. We are very proud of her.”

White will complete her master’s level non-thesis research on the genetics of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, frontotemporal dementia and related disorders in the laboratory of Dr. Marka Van Blitterswijk at Mayo Clinic.

“Adrianna is an excellent example of the high-caliber student that our program strives to attract,” said Dr. Ramaswamy Narayanan, Biomedical Sciences Program director.

The accelerated B.S. to M.S. in Biology with a concentration in Biomedical Sciences was developed to help biology students with a direct track to a master’s degree. This graduate level training after undergraduate preparation will help students meet the challenges of a competitive job market and the growing demands of employers.

This cross-disciplinary program features faculty collaboration from the Brooks College of Health, Coggin College of Business and the biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics, psychology departments within the College of Arts & Sciences. UNF partner organizations, such as Mayo Clinic and Johnson & Johnson Vision, will also come together to provide additional interdisciplinary expertise to the program.

In Jacksonville, the abundance of major hospitals, research organizations, pharmaceutical companies, and biotech startups has created a vibrant biomedical life sciences cluster ripe with job opportunities for students with advanced training in biomedical sciences and biotechnology. For more details on the biomedical sciences program, visit