Willie Craft Jr.
"Willie is very deserving of
this fellowship,” said “He
is motivated to succeed, and is very creative and
insightful in his research. He is also a great role
model for younger students, and really enjoys being
- Becky Dutch
Department of Molecular and Cellular
Ky. (August 6, 2004) -- Willie
Craft Jr., a University of Kentucky student in
the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry,
has been awarded a Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research
Service Award Predoctoral Fellowship from the National
Institutes of Health. The fellowship is awarded to
a minority student involved in biodefense research.
Craft is the son of Willie W. Craft Sr. and Ollie
M. Craft of Topeka , Kan.
“I am elated to receive such a prestigious
award,” Craft said. “In doing so, I hope
to serve as a role model in helping other minority
students become aware of the opportunities present
in the field of medical research, in addition to
making contributions to the study of viral entry.”
The award provides up to five years of support for
research training leading to a doctorate or equivalent
research degree; the combined medical/doctorate degree;
or other combined professional degree and research
doctoral degree in the biomedical, behavioral sciences,
or health services research. The fellowship is designed
to enhance the racial and ethnic diversity of the biomedical,
behavioral and health services research labor force.
Craft is also a mentor in the Bucks for Brains
program and the freshmen summer program at UK .
"Willie is very deserving of this fellowship,” said
Becky Dutch, assistant professor, Department of Molecular
and Cellular Biochemistry, UK College of Medicine,
and program mentor. “He is motivated to succeed,
and is very creative and insightful in his research.
He is also a great role model for younger students,
and really enjoys being a mentor."
"I am continually impressed by Willie's intelligence
and by the incredible enthusiasm he brings to our
department, and this award clearly shows the potential
he has to continue his growth as a research scientist," said
Kevin Sarge, professor, Department of Molecular and
Cellular Biochemistry, UK College of Medicine, and
director of Graduate Studies for the department.