Jennapher Lingo VanGilder, an ARCS Foundation Phoenix Scholar, was recently honored for her science advocacy efforts from the Graduate and Professional Student Association at Arizona State University. Inspired by her previous research experiences with animals, Jennapher helped cofound the Research Animal Retirement Foundation (rarfoundation.org), a non-profit organization that aims to raise money to cover the costs associated with research animal retirement. The cost of retiring one monkey to a certified animal sanctuary typically ranges anywhere from $10k-20k. To date, Jennapher and her colleagues have successfully raised enough money to sponsor the retirement of two young macaque monkeys.
Jennapher has also recently published her research (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0304394017309412), which suggests a clinical paper-and-pencil visuospatial test may predict motor learning abilities and skill retention. These findings have the potential to significantly impact clinical motor rehabilitation practice by providing insight prior to therapy. Jennapher expressed deep appreciation for her ARCS Scholar sponsors, Dr. Robert and Nancy Spetzler, stating that through their generosity she is able to continue her dissertation research investigating the neural basis for this phenomenon, as well as continue her science advocacy efforts, unimpeded by the burden of funding her work.