The annual Charles Morris STEM Social for Underrepresented Students, which provides networking and information to those interested in STEM fields, will be from 6:30-8 p.m. Wednesday, November 10, in the Escalante Room of Vrooman, room 103 at Hewett-Manchester Halls at Illinois State University.  

The keynote speaker will be alumna Dr. Jennifer J. Parker ’04, who earned a degree in biology with a minor in chemistry from Illinois State, a Ph.D. and medical degree from Stanford University, and a master’s degree in public health from Harvard University.

Drs. Jeanne Morris and Charles Morris
Dr. Jeanne and Dr. Charles Morris

The social will provide opportunities to learn about research and mentoring opportunities, potential scholarships, and career networking. This year’s scholarships will also be announced. Applications for the scholarships are available until November 3. Awarded will be two $500 Charles Morris STEM Scholarships, and the $1,000 Gletten Memorial Biomedicine Scholarship. Find eligibility and application for the Charles Morris STEM Scholarships and the Gletten Memorial Biomedicine Scholarship.  

Dr. Jennifer J. Parker 
Parker has conducted and published breast cancer, cervical cancer, and onco-dermatology clinical research and presented her work nationally. She also worked with a healthcare technology start-up to improve patient treatment access, delivery, and outcomes; and advocacy efforts to ensure healthcare technology innovations reach underrepresented and vulnerable populations.   

Parker obtained a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences with a minor in chemistry from Illinois State in 2004. She then earned a Ph.D. in chemical and systems biology from the Medical Scientist Training Program in 2011, and received her medical degree in 2012, both from Stanford University School of Medicine. She completed radiation oncology residency as chief resident at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in 2018.     

In June 2019, Parker completed the Commonwealth Fund Fellow in Minority Health Policy and Leadership at Harvard Medical School as well as an MPH with a concentration in health policy at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.  

Parker served as a clinical researcher in Northwestern University’s Department of Dermatology Clinical Trials Unit where she worked on established clinical trials and developed her own in conjunction with the Radiation Oncology Department to improve patient outcomes from radiation therapy. She also served as an advisor/consultant to start-up healthcare technology companies in Chicago. She recently decided to shift her area of focus in clinical medicine and is currently a dermatology resident at Temple University Hospital. She plans to focus on improving dermatological clinical outcomes in skin of color.   

Parker is a life member of the Student National Medical Association and has served at the local, regional, and national level. In residency she served as president of the Northwestern McGaw Underrepresented Residents and Fellows Forum, an organization committed to increasing and retaining diversity in medicine and advocating for the practice of socially aware and culturally competent medicine.  

Those who need special accommodations to fully participate in this program, contact University Housing at (309) 438-3002. Please allow sufficient time to arrange the accommodation.