Robert Whitney Newcomb Memorial Lecture and Internships


Beginning in 2001, the Robert Whitney Newcomb Memorial Fund has endowed an annual lecture in neuroscience and one or more internships per year for high-school students and graduate fellows at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS).

The Fund was established by the family of the late Dr. Newcomb. Before his death in 2000 at age 44, Dr. Newcomb was passionately devoted to brain research. He first came to NIH as a junior in high school, and thanks to his mentor, Dr. Claude Klee, he became a protein chemist at the age of 17. Dr. Newcomb received his doctorate from the University of Hawaii and gave up the second year of his Presidential Young Investigator Award to accept his first NIH grant. Dr. Newcomb’s association with NIH continued as he later served on NIH study panels. The Newcomb family established this memorial fund because NIH is the most appropriate place to further Dr. Newcomb’s work on brain research and the chemical basis of stroke and aging.

This program is only available to Maryland students, who are at least 16 years old and whose home school is either in the Downcounty Consortium, the Northeast Consortium, or Seneca Valley, Watkins Mill or Gaithersburg.

Download the Robert Whitney Newcomb internship application here.

2019 Robert Whitney Newcomb Memorial Lectures:

Monday, December 2, 2019
12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
Porter NeuroscienceResearch Center
Building 35A, Room 620/630
National Institutes of Health
Bethesda, Maryland

Speaker: Lisa Goodrich, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Neurology, Harvard Medical School
Topic: Sounding out neuronal diversity in the auditory system


Public-Sector Partners:
National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)

Private-Sector Partners:
Family of Robert W. Newcomb*

*Provided financial or in-kind support for this program.

FNIH Contact

Please contact the Advancement Office for more information at [email protected] or 301-402-4976.


  • Endow an annual lecture in neuroscience and one or more internships for high-school students at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS).
  • Further Dr. Newcomb’s work on brain research and the chemical basis of stroke and aging.

Results & Accomplishments

Beginning in 2001, the Newcomb Memorial Fund has endowed 16Lectures and 23 high school internships at NINDS.

Internship Coordinator and Mentor, 2002-Present

  • Susan Wray, Ph.D., Cellular and Developmental Neurobiology Section, NINDS

Interns & Fellows (2002-2018)

  • 2002
    • Christopher Ogata, Wheaton High School
  • 2003
    • Thomas LaCastro, Thomas Edison High School of Technology
  • 2004
    • Maryan Rabei, Walter Johnson High School
    • Andrew Yewdell, John F. Kennedy High School
  • 2005
    • Sahan Hapangama, Wheaton High School
    • Saidah Adams, Blake High School/Edison High School
  • 2006
    • Cina Karodeh, Paint Branch High School
      • Stephen Doore, Springbrook High School
  • 2007
    • Kimeya Ghaderi, Northwood High School
  • 2008
    • Christina Jacob, Paint Brush High School
    • Kefre Akpaete, Springbrook High School
  • 2009
    • Khavin Suong, Northwood/Edison High School
  • 2010
    • Marie Hickman, Seneca Valley High School
    • Jade Williams, Watkins Mill High School
  • 2011
    • Ashmina Shilpakar, Wheaton High School
    • Sarah Shangraw, Post-Baccalaureate Intern, Graduate of University of Puget Sound
  • 2012
    • Ebony Argaez, Montgomery Blair High School
  • 2013
    • Ernest Ekunseitan, Montgomery Blair High School
    • Eudorah Vital, John F. Kennedy High School
  • 2014
    • Ernest Ekunseitan, Montgomery Blair High School
  • 2015-2016
    • Jaime Atilano, Seneca Valley High School
  • 2015-2017 Post-Baccalaureate Fellow
    • Leigh Dairaghi, Carleton College
  • 2016-2017
    • Sarah Reside, Wheaton High School
  • 2018
    • Samantha Naya, Watkins Mill High School
  • 2019
    • Zaria Wilson, Gaithersburg High School

Previous Robert Whitney Newcomb MemorialLectures

  • May 2001: David Yue, M.D., Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University
  • December 2001: Richard Tsien, D. Phil., Stanford University
  • April 2003: Daniel Johnston, Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin
  • April 2004: Richard Aldrich, Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin
  • April 2005: Clay M. Armstrong, M.D., University of Pennsylvania
  • April 2006: Bruce P. Bean, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School
  • November 2006: Gary Yellen, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School
  • March 2008: Roger Nicoll, M.D., University of California, San Francisco
  • December 2008: Roderick MacKinnon, M.D., The Rockefeller University
  • November 2009: Dwight Bergles, Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University
  • April 2011: Craig Jahr, Ph.D., Oregon Health & Science University
  • October 2011: Diane Lipscomb, Ph.D., Brown University
  • December 2012: Ann Marie Craig, Ph.D., University of British Columbia
  • September 2013: David E. Clapham, M.D., Ph.D., Harvard Medical School
  • June 2015: Richard H. Kramer, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley
  • March 2016: Erik Jorgensen, Ph.D., University of Utah
  • February 2017: Daniel Choquet, Ph.D., Bordeaux University
  • November 2017: Herwig Baier, Ph.D., Max Planck Professor for Genes Circuits Behavior


To donate, please contact [email protected] or visit the FNIH donation page.

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