Helping to Develop a New Class of Antibiotics while Advancing to Three Consecutive America East Women's Lacrosse Championships

SUNY Chancellor’s Award Student Profile: Janeen Bell

Janeen Bell ’16, is one of 10 UAlbany students who will be honored with a 2016 Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence. (Photo by Carlo De Jesus)

ALBANY, N.Y. (March 8, 2016) – University at Albany senior Janeen Bell is an honors program scholar, undergraduate research assistant, student athlete, and community volunteer. That’s just part of what made her an ideal recipient for a 2016 Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence.

A native of Niskayuna N.Y., Bell is one of 10 UAlbany students who will be honored with a Chancellor’s Award. This prestigious accolade recognizes graduating SUNY students who have best demonstrated their ability to integrate academic excellence with accomplishments in the areas of leadership, campus involvement, athletics, career achievement, community service or creative and performing arts.

At UAlbany, Bell has done it all, and then some.


  • She maintains a 3.97 GPA in UAlbany’s biology honors program, and has been named to the Dean’s List each semester since entering the University.
  • In 2015, Bell earned the Katherine Vario Scholarship, given to an outstanding female undergraduate interested in a career in medicine, along with the Dr. Herbert S. and Mrs. Inez '36 Bailey Scholarship.
  • She has spent the last two years as an undergraduate researcher in the lab of Dr. Paul Agris, director of The RNA Institute. Bell, who is an aspiring physician assistant, has made major contributions in helping to develop a new class of antibiotics. Her work has been showcased several times on campus, including at the University’s first undergraduate research forum last fall.
  • She’s also a member of several on-campus groups, including the Presidential Honors Society (PHS) and Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK).
  • Off-campus, Bell volunteers at Albany Medical Center, Repsher & Associates Physical Therapy, and the Ronald McDonald House.
Bell at RNA Institute
Bell (far left) has spent the last two years as an undergraduate researcher in the lab of Dr. Paul Agris at The RNA Institute. (Photo by Paul Miller)

But what is most impressive? Bell built this amazing resume while also representing the University for three years as a member of the women’s lacrosse team. During her tenure, the program advanced to three consecutive America East Championships, earning UAlbany’s first ever at-large bid in a Division I NCAA Tournament last year.

“Since coming to campus as a freshman, I’ve strived to make the most out of every opportunity. In combination, they each represent who I am today,” Bell said. “Being honored with the Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence is the utmost achievement. It is such a prestigious award bestowed upon so few students. I am incredibly grateful, and appreciate UAlbany for supporting me through my successes.”

Upon graduating this May, Bell plans to continue her education through a physician assistant graduate program. In February, she took an on-campus training course to officially become certified as an EMT.

2016 Chancellor’s Awards recipients will be honored at a SUNY-wide ceremony at the Empire State Plaza Convention Center on Tuesday, April 5, at 2 p.m.

Watch for more individual profiles on all 10 of our outstanding students awarded in upcoming “Today at UAlbany” emails.

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About the University at Albany
A comprehensive public research university, the University at Albany-SUNY offers more than 120 undergraduate majors and minors and 125 master's, doctoral, and graduate certificate programs. UAlbany is a leader among all New York State colleges and universities in such diverse fields as atmospheric and environmental sciencesbusiness, public health, health sciences, criminal justice, emergency preparedness, engineering and applied sciences, informatics, public administration, social welfare, and sociology taught by an extensive roster of faculty experts. It also offers expanded academic and research opportunities for students through an affiliation with Albany Law School. With a curriculum enhanced by 600 study-abroad opportunities, UAlbany launches great careers.