Graduate Student Association

2021-2022

Officers

Shira Johnston

Shira Johnston
President
shira.johnston@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Shira grew up right outside of Northeast Philadelphia. She earned her BS in Chemical Engineering and a minor in Psychology as a Social Science from the University of Rochester in 2017. She is currently a fifth year PhD student in the Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine (CBRM) program. She works in the lab of Dr. Makarand Risbud studying the Role of Hypoxia Inducible Factors (HIFs) in Nucleus Pulposus Cell Adaptation..

Lindsey Mayes

Ariele Baggett
Secretary
ariele.baggett@students.jefferson.edu

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Ariele received her BS degrees from Penn State University in Immunology and Infectious Disease and Agricultural Science. She received her MS from Temple University in Biomedical Science in 2018 and is currently a fourth year CBRM PhD student in the lab of Dr. Gyorgy Csordas.

 

Eric V. Brown

Nathan Ryan
Treasurer
Nathan.Ryan@students.Jefferson.edu

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Nathan grew up in Vienna, VA. He earned his BA in Biology at the University of Delaware in Newark, DE and spent a year as a technician in the lab of Wilfred Chen studying metabolic pathways of anaerobes. Nathan moved to Philadelphia in 2018 to pursue a master’s degree in Microbiology and Immunology at Thomas Jefferson University. Upon graduating in 2020, Nathan took an opportunity to continue his master’s research and is currently a first year PhD student in the IMP program. He is currently studying parasite immunology in the Abraham Lab.

Brandie Morris

Jessica Kopenhaver
VP of Academic Affairs - PhD
Jessica.Kopenhaver@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Jess is from Hanover, PA, otherwise known as the Snackfood Capital of the World. She graduate from Rollins College in 2017 with a BA in Biochemistry/ Molecular Biology and a minor in Spanish. She is an upcoming second-year PhD student in the Genetics, Genomics, and Cancer Biology (GGCB) program. Currently, Jess is in the Snook-Waldman lab, studying colorectal cancer stem cells.

Brandie Morris

 Nichole Mansor 
VP of Academic Affairs - MS 
nichole.mansor@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Hi, my name is Nichole Mansor. I am a Biomedical Sciences Masters student at JCLS. I grew up in New Jersey, obtained my bachelors from University of the Sciences in 2020, and am interested in Multiple Sclerosis Research. Currently, I am working in Dr. Rostami’s lab at the Jefferson Hospital of Neuroscience. 

John Han

Natalie Warner Laspata
VP of Career Development - PhD
natalie.warner@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Natalie grew up in Clayton, NJ, about 30 minutes from Jefferson. She attended Stockton University in Galloway, NJ and graduated in May 2019 with a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. She joined the BMP program here at Jefferson in July 2019 and is now entering her third year. She works in the lab of Dr. Elise Fouquerel studying genome stability and DNA repair.

 

Ashley Liautaud

Erica Robertson
VP of Career Development, MS
erica.robertson@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Erica is originally from western Maryland where she attended Frostburg State University and received her BS in health science. She is a second-year master’s student in the Microbiology and Immunology program and also works as a research technician in the Abraham Lab where current research focuses on the immune response to parasitic nematode infections and vaccine development. 

Nicki Heinsinger

Olivia Ottone
VP Community and Cultural Affairs
olivia.ottone@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Originally from Carlsbad, CA, Olivia earned their BS in Chemical Engineering (2016) and MS in Engineering Management (2018) from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, IN. Olivia is currently a 4th year PhD candidate in the CBRM program. They work in the lab of Dr. Makarand Risbud, studying the many wonders of the intervertebral disc. 

 

Shira Johnston

Shantel Rios
VP of Internal Affairs, (PhD)
Shantel.Rios@students.jefferson.edu

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Shantel grew up an hour outside of Philadelphia in Pennsburg, PA. She graduated from Kutztown University in 2019 with her B.S. in Biochemistry with a minor in Spanish. She is currently a 3rd year PhD candidate in the IMP program working in Dr. Matthias Schnell’s lab creating a Rabies virus-based Lyme disease vaccine. 

Rogan Magee

Connor Ott
VP of Social Affairs
Connor.Ott@students.jefferson.edu

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Connor graduated in 2018 from Villanova University with a degree in Biochemistry. He is currently in his second year as a PhD student in the Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine program. Connor is a member of the Aplin lab and researches targeted therapies in melanoma cancer.

Rogan Magee

Adi Caspi
Social Media Coordinator
Adi.Caspi@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Adi grew up in Israel before moving to Bucks County, PA. She graduated from Temple University in 2020 with a Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry. She is an upcoming second year PhD student in the Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology program under the mentorship of Dr. Scott Waldman.

Rogan Magee

Samantha Barnada
Social Media Coordinator
Samantha.Barnada@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Sam is from Montgomeryville, PA and earned her B.S. in Biology from Monmouth University in 2018. She is currently a second year PhD student in the Genetics, Genomics, and Cancer Biology program. Sam works in the lab of Dr. Marco Trizzino studying molecular mechanisms underlying developmental genetic disorders. .

 

Tess Cherlin

Gabrielle Scher
President Emeritus
Gabrielle.Scher@students.jefferson.edu

LinkedIn

Gabby grew up in Penn Valley, PA, just outside Philly. She received her BA in 2015 from Vassar College where she double majored in Biology and French. She then worked as a tech in Dr. Alfonso Bellacosa's lab at the Fox Chase Cancer Center. Gabby is currently a 5th year PhD student in the IMP program working in Dr. Matthias Schnell's lab.