ReTOOL Celebrates YOU: Quiana Wilkerson Vidal

For Black History month, the ReTOOL Program has decided to feature our young Black scientists as they embark on exciting careers. Today’s featured alum is Quiana Wilkerson Vidal.



Which school did you attend?
I attended the University of Florida for undergrad, and I’m currently at the University of Alabama, Huntsville.

What are you currently studying/researching?
I am researching Diabetes, Aging,and Inflammation in LEW.1WR1 rats.

Where are you studying/conducting research?
At the University of Alabama Huntsville PhD in Biotechnology Science and Engineering Program, under Dr. Sharifa Love-Rutledge.

Who is your science hero?
Mae Jemison, the first female African American astronaut.

What does it mean to you to be a young Black scientist?
It is important for me to be a good example for my daughter and young children in my family. I want them to know that they can be anything that they wants to be, but they must be persistent. I enjoy sharing my love of science with my daughter and I want to make a difference for her.

What message would you like to send to young Black students interested in cancer research?
Find opportunities to conduct research and learn about the impacts of cancer in the Black community. Volunteer and become a leader in your school.

Do you have anything else you would like to add or mention?
I am very grateful for the RETOOL program for allowing me to participate in a paid internship which helped me to gain admission into a PhD program.