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Space for success

Space for success

Wayne Baker April 20, 2023
Myanah Keys '23
Myanah Keys '23

SENIOR MYANAH KEYS PLANS TO BECOME A DOCTOR but expects to take some time off from school after her May graduation. She’s already completed pediatric oncology research and has been awarded a national grant, so time off would be well deserved. 

Keys is a biology major from Canton, Ohio, and is planning to take a gap year — and do more research — before entering medical school. 

She already has signature research credentials: She was named an Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation’s 2022 Pediatric Oncology Student Training Program grant recipient. Along with nine other students from across the country, Keys received funding to learn from pediatric oncology mentors. 

She also had an internship at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, where she utilized census data to figure out if geographical location could be a pre-determinant for whether a child will have cancer. 

For Keys, 21, finding a path to gain academic success at UD was helped by alumni, whose generosity she applauds. 

“Alumni, they are just as important to the University as I am,” Keys said. “I received a donor-funded scholarship my sophomore year, and that’s what kept me here because I couldn’t afford it.” 

Keys, who conducts research in evolutionary genetics in the lab of professor Mark Neilsen, also engages with campus outside of her major. She is a charter member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority and an academic success ambassador for the Multi-Ethnic Education and Education Center, making sure students have the resources they need to succeed. 

In 2021, during UD’s Black Alumni Weekend, attendees including Keys dedicated 10 stone monuments in Kennedy Union Plaza that bear the names of foundational historically Black Greek letter organizations and the National Pan-Hellenic Council. She was among the students who spoke at the event. 

“It is rewarding to know that those monuments will be there after I graduate,” she said. 

Keys discovered opportunities for success early in her time at UD. During her first year, Keys worked as a student assistant to the athletic trainer for the women’s basketball team. 

“All of the experiences at UD have helped me get into spaces that I never thought I would be able to get in.”

“Since I want to get into the medical field, I was able to get a lot of hands-on experience from that,” she said. “All of the experiences at UD have helped me get into spaces that I never thought I would be able to get in.”

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