SACNAS Chapter members attend virtual National SACNAS Conference

SACNAS – Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science – is an inclusive organization dedicated to fostering the success of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans, from college students to professionals, in attaining advanced degrees, careers, and positions of leadership in STEM.

2020 SACNAS – The National Diversity in STEM Virtual Conference
Dates: October 19 – 24
Location: Online!

The largest multidisciplinary and multicultural STEM diversity event in the country, the SACNAS conference serves to equip, empower, and energize participants for their academic and professional paths in STEM.  OSU SACNAS - Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics, Native Americans in Science - Chapter is one of 115 National Chapters in the US and was re-established on the OSU campus in 2012. OSU SACNAS Chapter is recognized by Student Leadership and Involvement sponsored by College of Agricultural Sciences and College of Engineering.  Thirty-three OSU undergraduate and graduate students from eight colleges (Agricultural Sciences; Engineering; Science; Forestry; Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences; Pharmacy; Business; Liberal Arts) joined thousands of others from across the US for the National Conference.

The virtual conference brings a unique blend of STEM, culture, and community in an online space where all can bring their whole self to STEM.

The conference featured a rich agenda including virtual:

  • Motivational keynote speakers
  • Robust offering of STEM Symposia and Professional Development sessions
  • Student research presentations
  • Graduate School & Career Expo Hall
  • Cultural celebrations, art, and music
  • Group and 1-on-1 mentoring opportunities

Oregon State University Attendees

  • Anton Alvarez
  • R. Antonio Gomez
  • Cindy Zurita Cruz
  • Ian Thompson Hernandez
  • Juriana Barboza Sagrero
  • Gloria Ruiz Orozco
  • Metzin Rodriguez Cardoso
  • Mariana Truijillo
  • Elizabeth Wirsching
  • Luis Garcia-Lamas
  • Daniel De Leon
  • Johannah Hamilton
  • Diana Esparza
  • Lauren Sankovitch
  • Dennet Flores
  • Brooke Aduviri
  • Elsa Moreno Rangel
  • Jose Torres
  • Michael Morgan
  • Aaron Mendez
  • Stephanie Ramos
  • Raven Waldron
  • Isis Velasquez
  • Coryn Bushyhead
  • Eric Gio Soto
  • Selene Heredia
  • Javier Rivera
  • Levi Waldron
  • Charlotte Epps
  • Roman Vega
  • Sophie Gomez
  • Victor Perez
  • Antonio Bustos

“Thank you so much for providing the funding for this wonderful experience! I really enjoyed listening to the inspirational keynote speakers, attending some of the workshops, and reading the student posters. I also enjoyed listening to the musicians from "El Rio" who performed right before the keynotes!

Thank you so much for allowing us to experience this conference in a virtual setting!”

Elsa A. Moreno Rangel
Oregon State University | 2023
B.S. Construction Engineering Management
STEM Leaders

“The workshop "Opportunities for Equitable Action on Climate and Resilient Energy Solutions" was really interesting and even ran long because there was a lot to say. I learned the meaning of "syndemic" which is when 2 diseases or harms aggregate and make each other worse. In this case we talked about how climate change and the pandemic have the capability of making each other worse (my example would be the fires affecting the air quality that affects the lungs of the people, who might get COVID-19 which also harms your lungs). A lot of people shared their experiences in the CHAT and I would recommend people watch it on demand if they're interested because it covered many more topics.”

-Gloria Ruiz-Orozc
Oregon State University | 2021
B.S. BioResource Research – Bioenergy Option
CAS Ambassador

“I attended a workshop presented by NSF on writing grant proposals with an effective Broader Impacts component. The panelists emphasized that the NSF and other grant giving foundations/organizations are paying more attention to the Broader Impacts aspect of grant proposals and that it should be seamlessly integrated into the Intellectual Merit component throughout the entire proposal process.

I am in the beginning stages of finding grant money for a student-led project to create an Intercultural Learning Community Garden at OSU's Oak Creek Center for Urban Horticulture. After attending the workshop, I understand how having a strong focus on the Broader Impacts to the OSU community - especially underrepresented students of color - when writing the proposal will make it stand out and increase my chances of success.”

-Charlotte Epps
College of Agricultural Sciences
Undergraduate Research Student class of 2021
Oregon Community Food Systems Network

Some of the workshops students could select included:

  • Earth Sky Connection: recalling traditional knowledge
  • Indigenous physicist
  • Fire, flood and mud, climate change
  • Developmental biology: multidisciplinary approaches to evolution and disease
  • unique funding for early stage scientists from NIH
  • Tell me about a time you...." Behavioral Interview
  • recent advances in mathematical biology
  • applying for FEDERAL jobs
  • improving scientific workplace, responding to harassment and bullying
  • Exploring Diversity and Career Pathways in Science and Policy
  • Is MD/PhD right for me?
  • Funny Science Communication: Reaching the public with humor
  • Biology of Cancer disparities
  • Creating a digital diversity and inclusion toolbox
  • Understanding biodiversity in a changing world
  • What to do when life or a pandemic derails your plans

Six undergraduate students had submitted abstracts accepted for poster presentations:

Cindy Zurita Cruz - Selenium Supplementation Absorption in Dairy Cattle a Nutrigenomic Insight, Mentor: Jean Hall

Victor Perez - Endometrial Inflammatory Cytokine Expression in Postpartum Beef Heifers Follow Platelet Rich Plasma Treatment, Mentor: Michelle Kutzler

Metzin Rodriguez - Social Emotional Learning and Precollege STEM Education: What is the Intersection Between Inclusion and STEM? Mentor: Susan Rowe

Gloria Ruiz-Orozco - A Comparison of Ammonia Inhibition on the Anaerobic Digestion of Organic Acids Between Digestate from Anaerobic Co- and Mono-Digestion Systems, Mentor: Tyler Radniecki

Juriana Examaray Barboza Sagrero - Guinea Pig Model of Mild Hyperandrogenemia During Puberty: Potential Cause of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), Mentor: Cecily Bishop

Ian Thompson Hernandez - Assessing Passive Transfer and Persistence of Antibodies to Newborn Calves from Cows Supplemented Selenium Yeast during Different Trimesters of Pregnancy, Mentor: Jean Hall

GRADUATE SCHOOL AND CAREER EXPO provided substantial opportunities for paid summer research, internship, post-bacc., graduate recruitment, fee waivers, campus visitations and more! OSU showcased 4 exhibitor expo booths (College of Agricultural Sciences & Fisheries and Wildlife Dept; Graduate School; College of Pharmacy; College of Engineering) in the ACADEMIC Institutions Directory. Hundreds of government agencies, research centers, non-profit organizations, colleges and universities, and corporate sponsors ALL there to provide students and young professionals with advice, information and opportunities including: paid internship and research programs, preferred application status, visitations, scholarships and fellowships, and more.

Post Conference Activities

Since the conference, the OSU SACNAS Chapter has been busy organizing and providing professional development sessions for its members.  Every other week, there is a virtual Chapter meeting for students covering topics such as: Preparing for Graduate School, Peace Corps, and Career Development.  Students have further partnered with OSU Pre-college Programs and Dr. Dominique Brooks to learn to present instructional content for middle and high school students and develop relationships with students to improve graduation and matriculation to higher education in Beaver HangOuts.

At the local level, we provide mentoring and networking opportunities, connect students to available resources, conduct workshops for professional development to help students define and achieve their goals, provide community service opportunities to promote active citizenship, and support OSU and the College of Agricultural Sciences in meeting their diversity related goals. Our members engage with each other and club defined activities allowing for support, camaraderie and community building enhancing success while providing substantial service to the university and surrounding community.

To get involved, email

The College of Agricultural Sciences at Oregon State University is Oregon's principal source of knowledge relating to agricultural and food systems, and a major source of knowledge regarding environmental quality, natural resources, life sciences, and rural economies and communities worldwide. The College provides undergraduate and graduate education leading to baccalaureate and graduate degrees, and extended education programs throughout Oregon and beyond. Its research programs create knowledge to solve problems and to build a knowledge base for the future. It is a source of information and expertise in integrating and applying knowledge with benefits that are felt in domestic and international settings.