Founding Members

Jessica Weaver
Ex-offico/Co-founder

Department/program: Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Biology

About: I am a PhD candidate working to improve production of valuable pharmaceuticals in the medicinal plant Catharanthus roseus. As a first generation college student, I realize how fortunate I am to have had so many opportunities to succeed. Providing opportunities for success is of particular interest to me and was a driving factor for founding GWISE at Northeastern University.

My favorite book is . . . Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.
My favorite quote is . . . “The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” Martin Luther King, Jr. .


Noreen Rizvi
Ex-offico/Co-founder

Department/program: Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Chemical Engineering

About: I am currently working on enhancing the production of anticancer pharmaceutical compounds from plant cell cultures through metabolic engineering, keeping in mind that future requirements cannot be satisfied by the low yield and high-cost of existing production. As a graduate student, I’ve come to realize how privileged I was to have mentors who guided me toward science and engineering. Through GWISE, I hope to similarly serve as a leader and assist in the advancement of women in science and academia.



Lauren Fitch

Ex-offico/Co-founder

Department/program: PhD Candidate, Department of Biology

About: I work with the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTb), which causes 1.5 million deaths each year worldwide. My goal is to determine which MTb genes allow it to survive antibiotic treament, and to use this information to develop more effective tuberculosis treatments.

If I were not a scientist, I would be . . . a writer.
My motto is . . . be kind, be smart, be brave.



Sydney Shaw
Ex-offico/Co-founder

Department/program: PhD Candidate, Department of Chemical Engineering

About:   I am a PhD student in the Chemical Engineering department working in Prof. Carolyn Lee-Parsons’ laboratory on metabolic engineering of the medicinal plant Catharanthus roseus. My non-research interests include science policy issues, science and engineering outreach, and exploring the outdoors.

My favorite molecule is . . .  ATP
My favorite drink is . . . unfiltered wheat beer

Other previous members

Nuhiya Rafeeq

Department/program: Master’s student in Information Systems

About: I have over 3 year of experience working with Data in Finance and Telecom Domains. I aspire to solve real world problems using Data Science and Software Engineering.

If I were not a engineer, I would be … a travel writer.
If I could be any age I would be 18, old enough to drive and young enough to make a lot of mistakes and learn from them.
I can never resist good food..!!


Marissa Giel
NE GWISE liaison/advertisement


Judith Piet
Advertisement / Marketing

Department/program: PhD Candidate, Department of Bioengineering

About: I am a French engineer. I am doing my PhD in Prof. Shefelbine’s M4 lab, and I work on restoring mechanosensitivity to aged bones.

The worst advice I have ever been given was … “Don’t dress up as Marie Curie for Halloween.” Obviously it’s a great costume.

The best advice I have ever been given is … “Don’t try to look smart, make the audience feel smart.”


Eliza Zalis
Secretary

Department/program: Graduate Student, Department of Biology

About: I work in Kim Lewis’s lab researching Staphylococcus aureus and microbial persistence. We are trying to figure out what makes it possible for the bacteria that cause chronic infections to tolerate antibiotics. When I’m not in the lab, I spend my time hiking, biking, reading, and cooking.

The worst advice I’ve ever been given: “Bring an umbrella – just in case.”
I can never resist: free food


FM
Farimah Mapar
Programs Chair

Department/program: Ph.D. candidate, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

About:  My research focuses on modeling, analysis, and predicting the behavior of complex and dynamical networks. In my spare time, I enjoy tutoring and helping educate next generation of accomplished women.

My favorite quote is: … Choose a Job You Love, and You Will Never Have To Work a Day in Your Life

The most joyful moment for me is … When I make someone smile.



Mahboobeh Rezaeeyazdi
Treasurer

Department/program: Graduate student, Department of Chemical Engineering

About: I am a Chemical Engineering PhD student from Shiraz, Iran. I work in Prof. Bencherif lab “Laboratory for Advanced and Multifunctional Polymeric Biomaterials (LAMP Biomaterials)” where my research is on synthesis and optimization of novel polymeric biomaterials for efficient cancer vaccine delivery.

My favorite movie is “defending your life”

If I were not a scientist, I would be a gardener or a baker!



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Jaclyn Lock
Vice President

Department/program: Graduate student, Department of Bioengineering

About: I am a Bioengineering PhD student working in Dr. Rebecca Carrier’s Advanced Drug Delivery Research lab. My research aim is to understand the intestinal mucus barrier and how its properties are altered in the presence of different food and in various disease states.

My favorite activity that helps me to relax is. . . baking.

If I could be any lab equipment, I would be . . . a fluorescent microscope.



Michelle Stolzoff
President

Department/program: PhD Candidate, Department of Bioengineering

About:  I am a PhD student in the Bioengineering department working in Prof. Thomas Webster’s nanomedicine lab. My work involves the design and optimization of nanocomposites for anti-bacterial, inflammatory and cancer applications. I’ve always been involved with science and engineering outreach, and it’s one of the many reasons I’ve become involved with GWISE.

My favorite scientist is . . . Nikola Tesla
My biggest fan is . . . probably my parents. I am their only child after all.



Sevtap Duman

Treasurer

About: I am a research assistant at College of Computer & Information Science and member of NEU SecLab. My research focuses on systems and Internet security. More specifically, I try to detect and prevent Internet fraud/threat on multiple platforms, under multiple guises. Besides research, I like reading and outdoor sports.

My axiom is . . . everything I dream becomes real; and this is my power.
My favorite time during the day is … now



Jessica Fitzgerald

Treasurer

Department/program: Graduate student, Department of Bioengineering

About: I am a second year Bioengineering Ph.D. student at Northeastern. I graduated with a B.S. in Engineering Physics in 2014 from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, OK and is originally from Albany, NY. Jessica is passionate about working on interdisciplinary projects to improve quality of life in the medical field, and reaching the younger generation of women in STEM fields. My specific research interests include nano- and micro-materials with applications in medical diagnostics.

My favorite quote is … “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” ~Einstein

If I were not a scientist, …  I would run my own bakery/cafe



Jennifer Morales
Director of Recruiting

Department/program: Graduate student, Department of Bioengineering

About:  I am currently a doctoral student and a NSF graduate fellow working in Bioengineering and Pharmaceutical Sciences. My research is based on the development of novel fluorescent nanosensors for sensing neurotransmitter transmission within a synapse.
My favorite Boston Getaway is … Green Necklace running path
If I were not a scientist, I would … open a cake and coffee shop!



Yeva Yue Shan 

Director of Fundraising

Department/program: Ph.D. candidate, Department of Biology

About:  I study bacteriology. My research focuses on the genetic basis of persister formation and mechanism of antibiotic tolerance. This research will provide insights into chronic infection eradication.

If I were not a scientist, I would be … a film director.
My biggest motivation is …curiosity.



Marissa Puzan

Director of Outreach

Department/program: Graduate Student, Department of Chemical Engineering

About:  I am a Chemical Engineering PhD student from Atlanta, GA. I work in Dr. Abigail Koppes’ Advanced Biomaterials for Neuroengineering Labratory (ABNEL), where my work focuses on designing an in vitro model of the intestine to study interactions between the epithelium in the small intestine and the neurons and glia of the enteric nervous system.

My favorite molecule is serotonin.

If I were not a scientist, I would be an architect.