The Margaret Bilson Research Scholarship - Winners

The 2020 Margaret Bilson Research Scholarhips were awarded to Sophia Jacobson and Lillian Delacruz!

Sophia Jacobson









Read more about Sophia Jacobson here!


 Lillian Delacruz  Read more about Lillian Delacruz here



2019 Margaret Bilson Research Scholarship Winners


Andrew Alamban   UA MCB Student Alan Alamban

"Studying how molecular pathways affect macroscopic properties in MCB courses and spending my breaks researching in lab reinforced how much I love biological research. Some highlights include learning about noise affecting gene expression and how scientists were able to demonstrate this noise. I have also had the privilege of seeing and measuring the change in conductance in cells, indicating the opening of ion channels."







Emily Barney UA MCB StudentEmily Barney 

"This award will allow me to devote more of my time to doing research and would allow me to gain more experience with taking on my own project. In the future I plan to go to grad school and continue with research in genetics. I have a strong interest in epilepsy and I would like the opportunity do to more to further research for treatments."




Shaira PerezUA MCB Student Shaira Perez

"My interest in biological research dates back to my junior year in high school when I was presented with an amazing outreach program from the UA. The BIOTECH Project aimed at teaching biotechnology techniques and research to high school students for college credit. This program taught me about several molecular and fundamental microbiological techniques such as polymerase chain reaction, Sanger sequencing, plasmid construction, etc. In addition, I learned the meaning of model organisms and I expanded my knowledge to future experiments."


Bennett Van Camp         UA Student Bennett Van Camp

"I am interested in studying the molecular basis of aging. The population of the US is rapidly aging and six out of the top ten causes of death in the US have age as a primary risk factor. Now, more than ever, it is important to understand not just how to live longer but to stay healthy for longer as well."






2019 UBRP Fellowships:


Alexander Blythe UA MCB Student Alexander Blythe

"I am interested in pursuing research into human diseases and syndromes, particularly cancer and neurological diseases such as ALS and Huntington's disease. Biochemical, biological, and pathological research are thus the areas that most excite me."





Rafael Armando Cancino Jr  UA MCB Student Armando Cancino

"I am really fond of getting involved in research that deals with oncology or viral epidemiological studies. I am really eager to learn more about the impact of VESPR and how it plays a role in changing the genomic defense sequences of potential human stem cells in order to counteract genetic, chronic disorders. Epidemiology is a field that I feel that I wouldn't mind studying in because I really want to understand the pathogenesis of different infectious/autoimmune diseases here in the US or globally, so that I can learn how epidemiologists work to treat these diseases in infected populations."


UA MCB Student Nicole Kummet 

Nicole Kummet

“I am studying Physiology and Molecular and Cellular Biology with the goal of going to medical school after I graduate in the hopes of becoming an oncologist. I loved my introduction to research. It gave me  the opportunity to branch out from using perfectly planned procedures that guaranteed good results, and it forced me to problem solve and be creative in a field that I love.”







Maria Elena Macias UA MCB Student Maria Macias

"The research area that excites me is that of cancer research. There are treatments for cancer but there is still so much to learn. My current interests are research that involves finding better ways to target just cancerous cells and not kill other healthy cells. I am also interested in working on research that tries to translate their findings from the in vivo organisms to humans with as little error as possible."



Amanda Ruelas    UA MCB Student Amanda Ruelas

"The areas of research that excite me are autoimmune diseases and neurodegenerative diseases. I am intrigued and fascinated about the molecular mechanisms that affect the mind and our immune system. Understanding these processes and what can go wrong in these processes that cause diseases is exceptionally intriguing. I am also extremely interested in cellular imaging. Being able to look at a damaged or diseased cell and monitor how we can change it through cellular imaging excites me."







Ashwin Siby

UA Student Ashwin Siby

“It truly amazes me that a lot of the laws and equations we learn from our textbooks and lectures took years of experimentation. From this little realization, I realized what a privilege it is to learn science and I instantly became captivated by biology. AP Biology class taught me not only a lot about the general basics of ecology and cell biology but introduced me to my prospective major.”




The Margaret Bilson MCB Research Scholarship

The Margaret Bilson MCB Research Scholarship is made possible by the generous bequest of Margaret Bilson, an Arizona native and UA alumna who had a passion for biology. MCB will award two $5,000 scholarships, each spring, to students who would otherwise be unable to pursue a lab position due to financial need.  One scholarship will be awarded to a student who has already obtained a lab position and needs financial support in order to continue. The second award will be given to a student who would like to pursue research, but has not yet obtained a position.  The MCB department will assist the second awardee with finding a position that supports their research interests.  

Scholarship amount: $5000

Eligibility Criteria

  • UA undergraduate majoring in Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Currently involved in research
  • In good academic standing (GPA of 2.5 or higher)
  • Demonstrate financial need

Application Requirements

Completed Application Form

  • Personal statement addressing why this scholarship is important to you (two page maximum)
  • Research Statement: one page maximum; a summary of current research progress and research goals (including any goals for pursuit of a career in research, if applicable)
  • Unofficial transcript
  • Letter of recommendation from your research advisor

Submission Process/Deadline

The 2020 Margaret Bilson Research Scholarhip Application is now open. Submit your scholarship packet in Scholarship Universe by 11:59PM March 9, 2020.