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The impact of an EPSCoR-backed education

Delaware native Mollee Crampton never considered graduate school while she was in high school, but with modest financial support from the Delaware Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), she is pursuing a master's degree in molecular biology and genetics at the University of Delaware.

For students with few resources, the linkages created between people and institutions in the Delaware EPSCoR network can help move them along the educational pipeline. The first in her family to attend college, Mollee's goals became more ambitious at each step of her educational journey as EPSCoR-sponsored programs showed her what was possible.

Mollee first earned an associate degree in biotechnology at Delaware Technical & Community College, a program initiated with EPSCoR backing during Delaware's first Research Infrastructure Improvement grant. The following summer she participated in an NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates internship hosted by Venu Kalavacharla, associate professor of plant science at Delaware State University (DSU). The internship led to Mollee completing her bachelor's degree in biology at DSU and being encouraged to apply for graduate school at the University of Delaware (UD).

Along the way, Mollee was also assisted by state and federal scholarship programs, such as Delaware's SEED Program and NSF's Computer, Science, Engineering and Mathematics scholarship and Bridge to Doctorate fellowship programs.

Mollee hopes to pursue a career in research and development for a pharmaceutical or biofuel company after completing her graduate studies. She is studying antimicrobial resistance in Salmonella bacteria under the supervision of Diane Herson, associate professor of biological sciences at UD.


  • the delaware epscor program helps students achieve their educational goals
Delaware EPSCoR is helping students achieve their educational goals.
Ambre Alexander, University of Delaware

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