New Scholars for a New Decade

A 21st  class of Petit Undergraduate Research Scholars has been selected. These 14 scholars will immerse themselves into the multidisciplinary pool of research at the Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience at the Georgia Institute of Technology in January 2020.

"This is a diverse cohort of students whose expertise spans a wide range of majors, and not only at Georgia Tech, but other Atlanta universities also,” notes Raquel Lieberman, Petit Scholar faculty advisor, professor in the School of Chemistry and Biochemistry and a Petit Institute researcher.

With eight women and six men in the new class, next year’s group of Scholars reflect a growing trend of more women entering STEM fields. Of the 14 students, 10 are from Georgia Tech, two are from Emory University, with one each from Agnes Scott College and Georgia State University. Five of the students are based in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory.

“I'm excited for all of them, because this is a unique opportunity, an entire year diving deep into an actual research project,” Lieberman says. “They'll also contribute substantially to papers that will be published and have a chance to present their work at conferences and other gatherings.”

Meet the 2020 class of Petit Scholars (listed here with their university, major, the principal investigator’s lab they’ll be a part of, and their mentor):

• Cindy Aguilera-Navarro, Agnes Scott College, Neuroscience, Tim Cope (mentored by Travis Rotterman);

• Berna Aliya, Georgia Tech, Neuroscience, Young Jang (mentored by Mahir Mohiuddin);

• Kasey Cervantes, Emory, Biology, Arijit Raychowdhury (mentored by Yan Fang);

• Ana Cristian, Georgia Tech, Biomedical Engineering, James Dahlman (mentored by Kalina Paunovska);

• Carolann Espy, Georgia Tech, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ingeborg Schmidt-Krey (mentored by Kasahun Neselu);

• Rachel Fitzgerald, Georgia Tech, Chemistry and Biochemistry, M.G. Finn (mentored by Asheley Chapman);

• Mariana Holguin-Lopez, Georgia State, Neuroscience, Todd Sulchek (mentored by Katherine Young);

• Brandon Kassouf, Georgia Tech, Biomedical Engineering, Mike Davis (mentored by Sruti Behri);

• Amy Liu, Georgia Tech, Biomedical Engineering, Shuichi Takayama (mentored by Eric Parigoris);

• Krishna Pucha, Emory, Neuroscience, Nick Willett (mentored by Jay McKinney);

• Milan Riddick, Georgia Tech, Biomedical Engineering, Andrés García (mentored by Pranav Kalelkar);

• Kevin Tao, Georgia Tech, Biomedical Engineering, Gabe Kwong (mentored by Ida Su);

• Paxton Threatt, Georgia Tech, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Neha Garg (mentored by Andrew McAvoy);

• Kevin Yin, Georgia Tech, Mathematics, Shuyi Nie (mentored by Mary Kho).

The Petit Undergraduate Research Scholarship program began in 2000 with the goal of developing a new generation of leading bio-researchers by providing them with an opportunity to conduct independent research in Petit Institute labs, and other bio-related labs at Georgia Tech, for a full year. Since 2000, the program has funded more than 300 students, with about 80 percent of them moving on to pursue graduate degrees.


News Contact Info: 

Jerry Grillo
Communications Officer II
Parker H. Petit Institute for
Bioengineering and Bioscience

News Images: 
News Image Caption: 

Kendreze Holland, a 2019 Petit Scholar, discusses his research at a recent poster session.

Introducing the Petit Undergraduate Research Scholars for 2020

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Kendreze Holland, a 2019 Petit Scholar, discusses his research at a recent poster session.