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Fellows' Bios

Spring 2006 Fellows

Achal Achrol


DR. ACHAL ACHROL is a Neurosurgeon at Stanford University School of Medicine.

Born in Jaipur, India, Achal moved to the US in 1981 with his family, who live in Vienna, VA.

Achal graduated from George Washington University in 2003, magna cum laude, with a degree in computer science. He completed his MD in 2009 at Stanford University School of Medicine.

As a researcher at University of California at San Francisco he developed a handheld electrocardiogram monitoring system, an NIH-funded bioinformatics database, a portable cerebral perfusion measurement device, and techniques to utilize magnetic resonance imaging to study volume and hemodynamic changes in aneurysms. He has co-authored thirteen journal publications and won funding awards from both University of California at San Francisco and Stanford University.

Ultimately, Achal plans to research new diagnostic and information systems to revolutionize medical care, while addressing social and policy issues related to medical research, including protection of research subjects, patient privacy, and the role of government in the patient-physician relationship.


Deema Arafah

DR. DEEMA ARAFAH is an MD candidate at Harvard University.

Deema was born in Cleveland, Ohio, to Palestinian parents who immigrated to the United States in 1978.

Deema graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard University in 2005 with a BA in history of science.

After college, Deema worked as an intern and telemedicine coordinator for the World Health Organization in Jerusalem and the Occupied Palestinian Territories; her work was supported by a fellowship from the Harvard Committee for Human Rights. She has also worked as an EMT and public health field researcher in the West Bank and with Physicians for Human Rights-Israel helping to coordinate medical evacuations. She has presented papers on Palestinian health and human rights at international conferences and was recently published inHaaretz, a major Israeli newspaper.

Once an accomplished footballer, Deema enjoys coaching youth soccer teams in refugee camps and US inner-cities. Deema hopes to pursue a career as a physician-advocate and medical educator. She is especially concerned with improving access to quality health care and education for people rendered socially or politically "invisible."


Alice Michelle Augustine

ALICE MICHELLE AUGUSTINE is a liaison to the Manhattan Family Court in New York.

Born in Dominica, Michelle is a green card holder.

Michelle completed ber BA in 2005 at Lehman College graduating Phi Beta Kappa. She earned her JD at Loyola University New Orleans School of Law. 

In her first year at Lehman College, Michelle worked over sixty-eight hours a week, holding two jobs to help support her family while remaining a full-time student. She was then awarded the Jeannette K. Watson Fellowship and a Ronald E. McNair Scholarship. As a Watson Fellow, Michelle has worked at the New York Supreme Court, the New York City Council, and the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice in Accra, Ghana. Alice was also on a Fulbright Scholarship in Turkey researching human trafficking.

Michelle has spent time in Haiti working on a human rights case submitted by the Inter American Court of Human Rights about the right to an education for Haiti's poorest citizens. She also organized a service mission in Haiti raising money to benefit children who were victims of street and gang violence.


Alvaro Bedoya

ALVARO BEDOYA is Chief Counse, Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Provacy, Technology and the Law, US Senate. (Senator Franken, Chair)

Alvaro was born in Lima, Peru and raised in Vestal, New York.

In 2007 Alvaro graduated from Yale Law School. He graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard University with a BA in social studies.

As an undergraduate, Alvaro performed outreach for the Migrant Farmworker Justice Project and wrote his senior thesis on the exploitation of foreign sheepherders in the American wool industry. Upon graduation, he worked as a research consultant for the International Labor Organization, co-authoring three studies that exposed the widespread existence of forced labor in Peru, Bolivia and Paraguay.

Before his work for Senator Franken, Alvaro was an associate for Wilmer, Cutler, Pickering, Hale and Dorr LLP, where he specialized in litigation and investigations in Latin America.


Anna Bershteyn

ANNA BERSHTEYN is currently working HIV epidemiological modeling for Intellectual Ventures Lab in Seattle.  

Anna was born in Kiev, Ukraine and immigrated with her family to California in 1989.

Anna completed her Ph.D. in materials science and engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, studying regeneration of bone and cartilage tissue. Since entering Massachusetts Institute of Technology as an undergraduate, Anna helped develop a Solar Water Disinfection Device, interned with a Navajo weaver's cooperative, and conducted research at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and the Argentinean steel company Tenaris Siderca. Anna volunteers as an EMT, as a Boston Red Cross disaster responder, and as the volunteer coordinator for a local homeless shelter.

Anna drums with the sabar drum ensemble "Rambax MIT," which recently toured in Dakar, Senegal.


Amit Bouri

AMIT BOURI is a consultant at the Monitor Institute, a Boston-based strategy consulting organization serving the social sector.

Amit was born in California and raised by a single mother from India.

Amit graduated with an MPA/MBA joint-degree at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, where he led global health and corporate social responsibility initiatives. He received his BA in sociology and anthropology from Swarthmore College. While there, he studied traditional Chinese medicine in Shanghai, China, and co-founded a mentoring program for underprivileged immigrant children in Philadelphia's Chinatown.

After his graduation, Amit worked first as a consultant for Bain & Company and then for the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, where he contributed to the implementation of international programs to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV. Recently, he helped develop a strategic plan for Johnson & Johnson's HIV/AIDS philanthropic efforts.

Amit envisions a career focused on mobilizing private, public, and nonprofit resources to address poverty and inequity.


Gabriel Brat

GABRIEL BRAT is a Surgeon at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Maryland. 

Gabriel is the son of Argentine immigrants.

Gabriel started his residency in surgery at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and graduated from Stanford Medical School. He graduated with a BSE, summa cum laude, in bioengineering from Arizona State University. While at Arizona State University, Gabriel developed a diabetes treatment program for Hispanic and Native American patients from a low-income community. Most recently, he led an HIV prevention program in Central America. After graduating, he won a Marshall Scholarship, which allowed him to earn graduate degrees in Latin American studies at Oxford University and public health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Gabriel has conducted fieldwork in Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala on a variety of projects since his undergraduate years, all related to health concerns of underserved populations. Gabriel aspires to combine a career in medicine and development. He hopes to lead programs that bring together science, community involvement, and long-term philanthropic and commercial investment to improve the health of marginalized populations.


Tomas Carbonell

TOMAS CARBONELL is an associate at Van Ness Feldman, PC in Washington, D.C where he works on clean energy and climate policy projects.

Tomas was raised in North Carolina by Cuban parents.

Tomas graduated from Yale Law School in 2008. He graduated from North Carolina State University in 2002 with degrees in chemical engineering, economics, and multidisciplinary studies. Pursuing a passion for international environmental law and policy, Tomas went on to earn master's degrees in development economics and environmental management as a Marshall Scholar at Oxford University.

Tomas has interned at the Center for International Environmental Law, Environmental Defense Fund, the US Department of Justice, and the World Resources Institute, and has written extensively on the environmental impacts of official export credit agencies. He is committed to a career as a policymaker or litigator in the environmental area, either at an environmental group or a government agency.


Dora Castañeda


DORA CASTAÑEDA is an attending staff anesthesiologist at Kaiser Permanente and mother to two daughters.

Dora is the daughter of Mexican immigrants who settled in Los Angeles in 1974.

Dora graduated cum laude from University of California at Irvine in 2001 with a BS in biological sciences. She  received her MD from Stanford University.

In pursuit of her medical degree, Dora published three scientific papers on her work in the epilepsy research section at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD. Intrigued by the complexities of research, she is devoted to improving medicine through basic science, with emphasis on applying her findings to cerebrovascular disease. Dora aspires to mold a basic science and public health approach to research with direct applications to the health of medically underserved populations, especially in stroke treatment and prevention as an academic neurosurgeon.



Albert Chang

ALBERT CHANG works for the Obama Administration in Washington, DC.

Albert was born in Hayward, CA, to parents of Taiwanese and Chinese descent.

Albert received his BA from Stanford University in political science with honors in international security studies. He was a 2005 Harry S. Truman Scholar and will received his JD at Harvard University in 2009.

As an undergraduate, Albert served on the Defense Policy Team at the US Department of State, for which he was the recipient of the 2004 Department of State Certificate of Appreciation. Outside of government, Albert has received many research fellowships and worked for two foreign policy think tanks: the Nathan Hale Foreign Policy Society and the Institute for National Policy Research. First published at 19, Albert has since published two papers and was the youngest person selected to present his paper on diffusing the North Korean nuclear crisis at Harvard University’s largest conference in Asia. He wrote a thesis regarding a long-term peace framework between China and Taiwan. Albert intends a career as a policymaker promoting international security.


Snehal Desai

SNEHAL DESAI is Literary Manager at East West Players, the nation's oldest Asian-American theater company, in Los Angeles.

Snehal was born to Indian parents who immigrated in 1976; his parents reside in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

Snehal graduated from Emory University, summa cum laude, with a BA in political science and theater studies.He also completed a MFA in directing at Yale University. 

Since beginning his undergraduate degree at Emory University, Snehal has directed or assistant directed over thirty productions. He was awarded Emory University's Benston Award for Excellence in theater studies, was Resident Director for Theater Emory, and is a member of the Lincoln Center Director's Lab. He also interned in the office of US Senator Max Cleland, served as an Emory University Admission Advisor, and worked as Director of Outreach and Marketing for the Princeton Review of Georgia and Alabama.

Snehal's ultimate goal is to become the artistic director of a theater that champions bold new minority voices, and which creates socially conscious and politically challenging works that utilizes the transformative power of the theater to produce visions that challenge the way we see the world and live our lives. Snehal has spend the past year touring his solo show "Finding ways to Prove You're NOT an Al-Qaeda Terrorist when You're Brown ( and other stories of the Indian)." He was also project director for "The Spitting Game," a new play commissioned by Emory Univeristy and recently presented a reading of his new play "Sita/Sati Part I: Apu Asleep in NYC" with Despina Theater Company. 


Grigory Goryachev



GRIGORY GORYACHEV is a virtuoso flamenco and classical guitarist.

Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, Grigory began playing the guitar at the age of seven. Since immigrating to the United States in 1995, Grigory has continued playing flamenco guitar while deepening his involvement with the classical style.

Grigory completed an MM in guitar performance and is a DMA at the New England Conservatory of Music.

Grigory is a student of the renowned concert guitarist Eliot Fisk. Following his debut at age nine, he performed regularly in major cities in Russia, and appeared frequently on television and radio. Grigory has toured North America, France, Spain, Scandinavia and Israel. He views himself as one of the few guitarists in the world who is equally proficient in both flamenco and classical styles.


Susie Huang


Susie was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (with her twin sister) to parents who emigrated from Taiwan.

Susie completed her BA and MA in chemistry, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from Harvard University in 2002. She received her Ph.D. in physical chemistry from the University of California at Los Angeles, her MD at the Harvard and MIT HST Program.

While completing her Ph.D. on a National Science Foundation graduate fellowship, Susie taught and mentored undergraduates and volunteered at the University of California at Los Angeles Medical Center.

Susie has conducted extensive research in magnetic resonance spectroscopy and imaging, authored numerous publications, and given talks at international conferences. Susie envisions a career as a physician scientist working to improve cancer detection and therapy through molecular imaging.


Yashar Kalani

DR. YASHAR KALANI is an assistant professor at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, Arizona where he works as a physician-scientist. 

Yashar was born in Tehran, Iran, his family settled in the US in 1996.

After completing a combined BS/MS at UCLA, Yashar began doctoral studies at the California Institute of Technology. Upon completion of his doctorate he matriculated at Stanford University School of Medicine where he concurrently completed his MD and postdoctoral training in stem cell biology. While at Stanford he won fellowships from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, American Heart Association and the American Medical Association. In 2009 Yashar began residency training at the Barrow Neurological Institute. 

Yashar and his colleagues were recently awarded a 5-year, $4 million dollar grant from the NIH to investigate the role of extracellular RNAs as biomarkers of stroke. 


Geoffrey Krampitz


Geoffrey Krampitz

A native of San Jose, Costa Rica,Geoff came to the United States upon the murder of his parents shortly before his eighth birthday. He is a naturalized citizen who grew up in a children's home and with relatives in Texas.

Geoff received his MD from Stanford University. Geoff earned a BSE in biomedical engineering from Johns Hopkins University in 1998. After several years helping to launch a couple of start-up software companies in Silicon Valley, he performed stem cell research at the University of California at San Francisco while working toward an MSE in biomedical laboratory science from San Francisco State University.

Driven by a vision of equality of opportunity and by gratitude to those who helped him, Geoff founded the Medical Mentorship Program, a program that pairs disadvantaged premed students from community and state colleges in the San Francisco area with current Stanford University medical students and provides guidance on how to improve their medical school applications.

In addition, Geoff co-coordinated the 2006 Latino Medical Student Association (LMSA) Regional Conference and raised over $140,000 for LMSA and its mentorship and community outreach programs. He has co-authored several journal articles and is the recipient of the Nelson Fellowship Research Award, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Research Training Fellowship for Medical Students, and the American Medical Association Minority Scholar Award. Determined to prevent others from experiencing the same hardships he endured as a result of losing his parents, Geoff plans a career as a trauma surgeon.


Paul Kwak

PAUL KWAK is now a Resident in Otolaryngology at the Bobby R Alford Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, in Houston.

Paul was born in Kettering, OH, to parents of Korean descent. 

Paul received his MD from Case Western Reserve University. An accomplished pianist, Paul received the MM in collaborative piano at the Juilliard School and continues to perform, specializing in collaboration with vocalists. Paul graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University in history and science.  He also received an MSc in comparative social policy from Oxford University.

Paul pursues otolaryngology in order to combine his desire to become a physician with his fascination with the voice, singing, and music.


Elizabeth Kwo

DR. ELIZABETH KWO is the Predident at New Pathway Education and Technology Group in Boston.

Elizabeth was born in Taipei, Taiwan and her family now lives in San Francisco, California.

Elizabeth completed her MBA and MD at Harvard University. She completed a BA in human biology from Stanford University in 2004 and received the Lloyd W. Dinkelspiel Award.

After graduation, Elizabeth conducted research on elderly healthcare disability and dependency as a Fulbright Scholar in Taiwan. Elizabeth created the Nepal Clinical Internship, a program that has sent over 140 US students to work in Kanti Children's Hospital in Nepal, allowing them to develop clinical skills and experience international healthcare. She is a published poet and has extensive experience abroad, working in orphanages in Mexico, establishing health clinics in rural Ecuador, building a women's shelter in Guatemala, and researching traditional medicines in Peru.

Elizabeth plans to dedicate her career to geriatrics and would like to run a nonprofit organization that improves healthcare for the elderly


Darryl Li

DARRYL LI is a post-doctoral research scholar at the Committee on Global Thought at Columbia University.


Darryl was born in 1979 to Chinese immigrants who are naturalized citizens and currently reside in Canton, MA.

Darryl completed his Ph.D. at Harvard University in anthropology and Middle Eastern studies and completed his JD at Yale University. He earned a BA from Harvard University in 2001 and an MPhil from Cambridge University in 2003.

Darryl has conducted academic research in Rwanda, Yemen, and Pakistan, where he was a visiting lecturer in the Law & Policy Department of the Lahore University of Management Sciences. Darryl has worked for the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (Gaza), Human Rights Watch, and was a consultant for B'tselem, a leading Israeli human rights organization. He also interned at the South Asia Human Rights Documentation Centre (New Delhi). Darryl hopes to pursue a career alternating between scholarship and activist litigation. 


Theodore Marentis

DR. THEODORE MARENTIS is at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor completing his residency in radiology, after which he will complete a Nuclear Medicine Fellowship. 

Born in Athens, Greece, Theodore’s family came to the US for the first time in 1996 and he became a naturalized citizen in 2004.

Theodore completed his MD at the Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology Health Sciences and Technology program. He received his BS in biomechanical engineering and MS in electrical engineering from Stanford University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa and Tau Beta Pi

At Stanford University, Theodore was active in community service with such organizations as Habitat for Humanity and the Urban Ministry. He was the chairman of the community service committee for his fraternity. His research on Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) has been published three times. Theodore's immediate goal is to produce an implantable liver dialysis machine. He is the co-inventor on a renal dialysis patent and believes that medicine is the perfect confluence of his passions for science and technological development and his desire to have a positive social impact.

Theodore is the co-founder of Kalyspo, biotech company that is developing a unified system for the prevention of retained foreign objects during surgery. He is also developing a blood pressure sensor to be used in portable X-rays or scanners to help doctors determine whether a stent has failed. 


Susan Mathai

DR. SUSAN MATHAI is completing a fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Colorado Denver. She will be focusing her fellowship training on basic and translational research on fibrotic lung diseases.

Susan was born in Dallas, Texas, to Indian parents who are naturalized citizens, and who immigrated to the US in 1982.

Susan completed her internal medicine residency at Massachusetts General Hospital in 2012. She received her MD from Yale University and graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard University in 2005 with a degree in social studies.

While at Harvard University, Susan received grants to support senior thesis research concerning healthcare in Cuba and community health work with Partners in Health. Fluent in Spanish and English, Susan conducted research in Cuba, and has been involved in activities utilizing her language skills, such as clinical research on reproductive health and clinical translating. While at Harvard University, Susan directed the Mission Hill After School Program, a student-run project serving children in Roxbury.


Isis Saratial Misdary

ISIS SARATIAL MISDARY is a director who has worked in New York, San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Cairo.

Born to parents who emigrated from Egypt, Isis lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Isis completed a MFA in directing at the University of California at San Diego. She earned her BA from Villanova University in 1999 and trained as an actor at Middlesex University in London.

Since graduating, Isis has worked as a Van Lier Resident Director at Second Stage Theatre and as a Directing Associate at the Lark Play Development Center. Studying indigenous Egyptian puppetry as a Fulbright grantee, she co-founded WAMDA Group, effectively reviving the art from near extinction. WAMDA's shows attempt to disrupt the present from the past, to tackle contemporary social and political issues. WAMDA collaborated with Egypt's Ministry of Culture and UNESCO to create a Center for Folkloric Performance. Isis is a recipient of the prestigious National Endowment for the Arts/Theatre Communications Group Career Development Program for Directors.

Ultimately, she hopes to run a US-based international production company where art collides with activism, focusing on Middle Eastern and other marginalized voices. This spring, Isis will be directing for the Arab American Comedy Festival in New York City and Los Angeles


Vipin Narang

VIPIN NARANG is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at MIT and member of MIT’s Security Studies Program.

Vipin was born in the Bay Area to parents of Indian descent.

Vipin received his Ph.D. from the Department of Government, Harvard University in May 2010. His dissertation, “Posturing for Peace?: The Sources and Deterrence Consequences of Regional Power Nuclear Postures”, systematically explores the effect of nuclear postures in deterring conflict and develops a theory for their origins in regional nuclear powers. It was awarded Harvard’s Edward M. Chase prize. He holds a B.S. and M.S. in chemical engineering with highest distinction from Stanford University and an M. Phil with Distinction in international relations from Balliol College, Oxford University, where he studied on a Marshall Scholarship.

Vipin has been a fellow at the Olin Institute for Strategic Studies, Harvard University and a predoctoral fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University.

Vipin's research interests include nuclear proliferation, South Asian security, and general security studies. His work has been published in several journals including International Security, the Journal of Conflict Resolution, and International Organization. His first book on regional power nuclear strategy is forthcoming with Princeton University Press.


Sze-Ling Ng

SZE-LING NG is currently a post-doctoral research fellow in the Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology at Harvard University, studying T cell receptors in the autoimmune disease multiple sclerosis.

She was born in China  and naturalized in 2003.

Sze-Ling received her Ph.D. from the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology at Harvard University in 2010. As a graduate student, Sze-Ling studied the role of IKKe in JAK/STAT signaling during the antiviral immune response. In 2005, she graduated from the Honors College at Michigan State University with a 4.0 GPA and a dual BS in biochemistry and physiology. She has taught high school and undergraduate students, led several student organizations, and performed service work in Mexico, Puerto Rico and the US.

Sze-Ling has conducted research since the summer after her freshman year and has published in Science, Molecular Cell, and Nature Biotechnology. She is the recipient of a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, Bok Center Certificate of Distinction in Teaching, Featherstone Prize, and Michigan State University Board of Trustees Award.

Sze-Ling aspires to conduct research that will benefit society, and to encourage youth to pursue a higher education and science-related careers. Recently, she won the Charles A. Janeway Prize for Best Poster Presentation at the 2011 New England Immunology Conference


Shantanu Nundy

SHANTANU NUNDY, M.D., works on behalf of the Human Diagnosis Project (www.humandx.org), an open medical project to map any human health problem to its possible diagnoses. He practices primary care at Mary's Center, a federally qualified health center for low-income and uninsured individuals in Washington D.C., and is a lecturer in health policy.

Shantanu’s career spans public health, academia, and technology. Previously, he founded a medical clinic in rural India and served as a consultant to the World Health Organization (WHO) on patient safety, the Results for Development (R4D) Institute on noncommunicable diseases, and SNEHA, a women’s and children’s health non-governmental organization in Mumbai, India. Shantanu has conducted research at Harvard Medical School, Johns Hopkins, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and published peer-reviewed articles in Health Affairs, Academic Medicine, and the Journal of Medical Internet Research. Prior to Human Dx, Shantanu was Managing Director for Clinical Innovation at Evolent Health, a population health management company, and co-founded mHealth Solutions, a mobile messaging startup for patients with chronic illness.

Shantanu received his B.S. from MIT, an M.D. with Alpha Omega Alpha distinction from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.  He trained in internal medicine at the University of Chicago Medical Center where he also completed an Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) research fellowship and served as a principal investigator. He is board certified in internal medicine and is a Paul and Daisy Soros Fellow. His first book, Stay Healthy At Every Age: What Your Doctor Wants You to Know, was chosen as one of the top 5 health books of 2010 by Wall Street Journal Online.


Antonio Perez

ANTONIO PEREZ is completing his fellowship in Cardiovascular Medicine at Cleveland Clinic.  

Antonio was born in North Bergen, NJ, in 1984 to Cuban parents.

Antonio earned a BA in history and science from Harvard University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and received the Detur Prize and John Harvard Scholarship.He completed his MD/MBA at Harvard University.

A research fellow of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Antonio helped develop stem cell therapies for muscular dystrophy. His findings have been featured in numerous national conference presentations and scientific publications, including Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and Gellis and Kagan's Current Pediatric Therapy.

Antonio also co-founded PABSELA, Harvard University's first program aiming to advance biomedicine in Latin America through partnerships with Latin American universities. He directed Harvard ExperiMentors, a science education program in elementary schools.

Antonio hopes to become a cardiologist and healthcare executive. 


Abbas Ravjani

ABBAS RAVJANI is currently serving as Counsel and Professional Staff Member on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in Washington DC.

Abbas was born in Gainesville, Texas, to parents who emigrated from Pakistan in the 1970's and are now naturalized citizens.

Abbas is a graduate of Yale Law School where he was a finalist in the Morris Tyler Moot Court Competition and an articles editor on the Yale Journal of International Law.  He received his BA, summa cum laude, in political science and Middle East Studies from Austin College in Sherman, Texas, where he was elected Student Body President and was a recipient of a Truman Scholarship. 

Abbas has previously worked for the Department of Navy in Washington, DCas a Middle East Political-Military Analyst, the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) in the Treasury Department, and the Center for Strategic and International Studies.  


Yulia Ryzhik

YULIA RYZHIK  is a Lecturer in English and the Council of Humanities at Princeton University.

Yulia emigrated, with her family, from Moscow in 1995. They are now naturalized citizens, living in South Salem, NY.

Yulia completed her Ph.D. in comparative English literature at Harvard University where she held a Mellon Fellowship in humanistic studies. Yulia is a teaching fellow for an Enlightenment course run by the Harvard Summer program in conjunction with Ca'Foscari University in Venice. She received her BA, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard University in 2005. As an undergraduate, Yulia was awarded various institutional prizes and travel grants.

In 2004, Yulia served as an interpreter between Harvard University's Lowell House and the Danilov Monastery near Moscow in negotiations over the Monastery's bells, which were acquired by Lowell House during Stalin's regime. Yulia pursues intensive language study in her summers and participates in poetry and elocution competitions. Yulia was awarded the Dexter Summer Fellowship for research in England and the Whiting Dissertation Completion Fellowship (Harvard University, 2010-2011). 

Yulia intends a career as a professor of English literature specializing in Renaissance poetry.


Colette Shen

COLETTE SHEN is currently at the University of Pennsylvania, conducting angiogenesis research and serves on the medical school's admissions committee.

Colette was born to parents from Taiwan who now live in Houston, TX.

Colette completed an MD/PhD in bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania. She graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard University in 2004 with a BA in engineering sciences.

Colette has conducted lab research on tissue engineering and stem cells at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Massachusetts General Hospital. Her research has led to several journal publications and was honored by the National Inventors Hall of Fame. She served as an undergraduate representative on the Harvard University Curricular Review, was director of the Harvard University-Massachusetts Institute of Technology Hippocratic Society promoting issues in healthcare, and was vice-president of Women in Science at Harvard-Radcliffe..

Colette looks forward to a career as a physician-scientist-educator, pursuing research that bridges engineering tools with problems in medicine, while also making science accessible to the general public. 


Amandeep Singh

Amandeep Singh is completing a short-track residency and fellowship into gastroenterology at the University of Pennsylvania

Amandeep completed a joint M.D. and Ph.D. at the Tri-Institutional Medical Scientist Training Program at Cornell, Rockefeller University and Sloan Kettering Institute.  Amandeep earned a B.A. in Biology, summa cum laude, from Cornell in 2002. He was elected Vice-President of the Cornell Student Assembly and was the Co-Founder and President of the Cornell Bhangra Club, devoted to traditional Indian dance.

As a professional choreographer, Amandeep has staged dances for the Bollywood Music Awards, NYC Summer Stage, and for many music videos and concerts of world-renowned artists, which have aired on BBC and MTV Desi. Amandeep founded and directs the Surat Sikh Conference, a federally recognized 501(c)3 non-profit organization in its fourth year. He has also published two scientific papers and a chapter of a medical licensing exam review guide.

Amandeep plans to use his training as a physician and a scientist to bridge the gap between the scientific, clinical, and social aspects of obesity.


Corinna Zygourakis



Corinna was born in Houston, TX, to parents who emigrated from Greece.

Corinna completed a MD at Harvard University as part of the Harvard and MIT HST Program. A graduate of the California Institute of Technology, she holds degrees in biology and literature.

Pursuing independent neuroscience-related research since age 16, Corinna has published two scientific papers, given presentations at several national conferences, and received the Neuroscience Research Prize of the American Academy of Neurology. At California Institute of Technology, she served in elected positions of the student government and volunteered in the neurosurgery department of a nearby hospital.

Corinna also plays the violin in chamber music ensembles and is a long-distance runner. Corinna plans to pursue a career in academic medicine that combines clinical care, research, and teaching in neurology or neurosurgery.