Leadership Team

Editor in Chief: Madeline Barron

Madeline (Maddie) is a Microbiology and Immunology Ph.D. candidate in Vince Young’s lab where she studies how the intestinal environment modulates bacterial colonization of the gut. When Maddie is not in the lab, she is writing about science. Given the results of scientific research affect and belong to everybody, Maddie is passionate about making them accessible and digestible to diverse audiences. She has written for various media outlets, including Massive Science and the American Society of Microbiology blog. You can find her on Twitter.

Logistics Coordinator: Muyu Situ

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Muyu Situ is a graduate student in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at the University of Michigan. Her research interests revolve around understanding the epigenetic mechanisms that underlie brain development and how misregulation of these mechanisms leads to neurodevelopment and neuropsychiatric disorders. Before coming to Michigan, she received her B.A. in psychology with a concentration in neuroscience from CUNY Hunter College in New York City. Outside of research, she is an avid cook, but most of the time, she is snuggled up with a good book or binging Brooklyn Nine-Nine (reminds her of home in NYC).

Logistics Coordinator: Christina Del Greco 


Christina is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Human Genetics where she studies enzymes that charge tRNA with amino acids in the mitochondria. Before arriving at the University of Michigan, she completed her B.S. in Biological Sciences at the University of Notre Dame (sorry but go Irish!). Christina is most interested in the intersections between biomedical science and policy, and how improved science communication can bring scientists and policymakers together more effectively. Outside of the lab, Christina is most likely reading science fiction, watching reruns of Castle, or teaching herself how to properly lift weights. She can be found on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Spanish Language Coordinator: Isabel Colón Bernal

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Isabel graduated in 2019 with her Ph.D. from the chemistry department at the University of Michigan where she was also in the inaugural cohort of scientific communications writing fellows. As a member of the Banaszak Holl Lab (no longer at UM), her doctoral research focused on understanding the change in chemical composition of bones and microstructure of collagen as a function of disease and treatment, and how this relates to mechanical properties. She came to Michigan after graduating from her bachelorís degree in chemistry from the University of Puerto Rico – Rio Piedras campus. When she isn’t in the lab, Isabel enjoys spending time with her husband and dogs, doing/teaching yoga, navigating Chemistry Twitter, and working on science communication. You can follow her on Twitter or connect with her on LinkedIn.

Communications Director: Jennifer Baker


Jenn is a Ph.D. candidate in Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Michigan. Her research in the Dickson and Huffnagle labs focuses on understanding how bacteria in the lung and gut contribute to the unwanted side effects of oxygen therapy (like oxygen-induced lung injury and ventilator-associated pneumonia) in patients with respiratory failure. Before coming to Michigan, Jenn completed a B.S. in Science Education at Indiana Wesleyan University, where she studied bacteria that thrive in extreme environments, including species from Antarctica and an Egyptian soda lake! When she’s not in lab, you can find her cooking, reading, hiking, or taking care of her many houseplants. Connect with Jenn on Twitter or LinkedIn.

Lead Illustrator: Katie Bonefas


Katie Bonefas is a Neuroscience PhD candidate in the Iwase Lab. Her thesis work is on chromatin regulators and how the ectopic transcription of germline genes in the brain could impact development and behavior. Katie earned her B.S. in Neuroscience from the University of Texas at Austin and graduated with highest honors. Although Katie always knew she wanted to be a scientist, her second lifelong passion is art. She is drawn to both science and art as each discipline is in pursuit of understanding – as she puts it – “just what on earth existence really is”. Connect with her on Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn to see her scientific and artistic endeavors!

Alumni Relations Director: Sarah Kearns


Sarah earned her Ph.D. in Chemical Biology at the University of Michigan where she studied the molecular roads of the cell in the Cianfrocco and Verhey labs. She is active in science communication by writing for her blog Annotated Science, freelancing with the American Institute of Physics and eLife, editing for MiSciWriters, and chaired the inaugural ComSciCon-Michigan 2018. She also organized the publication of the first MiSciWriters magazine, EquilibriUM. Sarah also loves to bake, take photos, make playlists, and drink lots of coffee. Connect with her on Twitter or LinkedIn.

Faculty Advisor / Consulting Editor: Scott Barolo


Scott is an Associate Professor of Cell & Developmental Biology at the U-M Med School and the Director of the Program in Biomedical Sciences (PIBS).  Scott enjoys editing far, far more than writing. He also likes movies; dead British writers (Austen, Wodehouse, Conan Doyle, I.M. Banks, Sterne, Dickens, Spark); science communication; and enhancers. Grammar nerds: check out that Oxford semicolon! You can follow Scott on Twitter (@sbarolo) and connect on LinkedIn.

Senior Editors

Christina Del GrecoPeijin HanJennifer Baker
Austin ShannonChristian GreenhillMaddie Barron

Content Editors

Christian GreenhillKane YorkSophie Hill
Olivia Pfifer AlgeJennifer BakerGenesis Rodriguez
William DeanChloe Rybicki-KlerAngela Ka Yan Chu
Henry ErtlMadeline CookeKristen Loesel
Neikelyn Burgos-TiradoWill DanaRyan Schildcrout
Sarah BassiouniLiz Tidwell

Spanish Translators & Editors

Cristina María RíosGenesis RodríguezIsabel Colón Bernal
Attabey Rodríguez-BenítezIrene Vargas-SalazarJean Carlos Rodríguez-Díaz
Adrian Melo CarrilloThibaut Pardo-GarcíaNeikelyn Burgos-Tirado
Paloma ContrerasSofía LópezFranco Tavella
Angel Ka Yan Chu


Katie BonefasZoe YeohCatherine Redmond
Emma Thorton-KolbeJacqueline Roberts


Co Editor in Chief: Emily Glass


Emily graduated from Central Michigan University in 2018 with a dual degree in psychology and neuroscience. She currently works as a laboratory technician in Dr. Geoffrey Murphy’s lab studying the impacts of Alzheimer’s Disease on learning and memory. She hopes to be a UM graduate student next year and later pursue a career in science writing.

Co Editor in Chief: Alyse Krausz

Engineering, Andy LeMarbe

Alyse is a PhD candidate in Biomedical Engineering in Prof. Mark Burns’s lab where she is developing a device to diagnose traumatic brain injury from a blood sample. Outside of the lab, she is active in science communication by coordinating workshops for RELATE, editing for MiSciWriters, and occasionally writing for her blog Prose on Paper. Alyse also loves to read, drink tea, try out new recipes, and practice yoga. You can follow her on Twitter or connect on LinkedIn.

Communications Director: Ellen KW Brennan


Ellen is a PhD candidate in the Neuroscience Graduate Program studying cortical circuits involved spatial navigation in Dr. Omar Ahmed’s lab. She received her bachelors in neuroscience from the University of Vermont and masters from the University of Michigan. Ellen is extremely passionate about science communication and is involved in many efforts, including working with MiSciWriters, co-chairing the 2020 ComSciCon-Michigan conference, and hosting open science discussions through Publications to the Public. After completing her PhD, Ellen hopes to enter a career in science communication where she can help bridge the gap between research institutions and the public who funds them. Outside of science, she enjoys performing with her improv troupe, woodworking, and reading fantasy novels (Stormlight Archives, let’s go). You can follow her on Instagram or connect on LinkedIn.

Editor in Chief: Sarah Kearns


Working towards getting her Ph.D. in Chemical Biology at the University of Michigan, Sarah studies the molecular roads of the cell in the Cianfrocco and Verhey labs. Outside of research, she is active in science communication by writing for her blog Annotated Science, freelancing with the American Institute of Physics and eLife, editing for MiSciWriters, and chaired the inaugural ComSciCon-Michigan 2018. She’s really excited to be putting together the first MiSciWriters magazine, EquilibriUM this summer. Sarah also loves to bake, take photos, make playlists, and drink lots of coffee. Connect with her on Twitter or LinkedIn.

Spanish Language Coordinator: Attabey Rodríguez-Benítez


Attabey completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras. Currently, she is a doctoral student in the program of Chemical Biology at the University of Michigan. After her first year she joined the labs of Prof. Alison R.H Narayan and Prof. Janet L. Smith. She focuses on using enzymes as chemical tools for the synthesis of natural products and elucidating their mechanisms of action through structural biology. In addition to research and contributing to MiSciWriters Attabey has a Spanish science blog, En Arroz y Habichuelas, where she writes about science for the general public and in Spanish! She also enjoys reading comics (Saga, Paper Girls, Bitch Planet, etc.), watching movies with a scoring above 7 on IMDB, and eating disgusting amounts of popcorn! You can follow her on Twitter and connect on LinkedIn.

Editor in Chief: Kristina Lenn


Kristina Lenn is a Physical Chemistry and Scientific Computing Ph.D. student in the Geva Lab where she is analyzing the quantum dynamics behind charge transport in photosynthetic reaction centers. She received her B.S. in chemical engineering from Wayne State University and her M.S. in chemical engineering from Cornell University. She spent three years as a lecturer at Wayne State before starting her Ph.D. at Michigan. When she is not busy doing research or writing her next post for MiSciWriters, she is working with the Museum of Natural History as a Science Communications Fellow, volunteering for STEM outreach events, reading as many books as possible, playing friendly games of chess, and writing for her own blog, Chic Geek and Chemistry Freak.

Editor-in-Chief: Whit Froehlich

William (Whit) Froehlich is a medical student at the University of Michigan. Prior to medical school, he studied at Amherst College, earning a BA in Mathematics and Economics. When not studying, taking care of patients, or working on MiSciWriters; he enjoys playing the cello with the Life Sciences Orchestra, serving in Central Student Government, playing board games, and learning more about communities, human systems, and ethics. He’s also sometimes on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Logistics Coordinator: Melissa Englund


Melissa is a graduate student in Human Genetics at the University of Michigan. She is currently working in the Boyle lab on identifying and understanding the functional mechanisms of negative regulatory elements in non-coding regions of the human genome. Using a novel reporter assay developed by the Boyle lab, she is working to understand the interactions of negative and positive regulatory elements around a single gene and the way their coordinated action leads to a spatiotemporally specific program of gene expression. After receiving her degree in molecular and cellular biology at the University of California, Berkeley she worked for two years at Anvil Biosciences developing immune disease-related therapeutics. As a recent transplant from sunny CA, she has developed weather-appropriate hobbies for MI like tubing and canoeing in summer and rock-climbing and reading sci-fi/fiction novels in the winter. She also loves baking and listens to way too many podcasts.

Editor-in-Chief: Irene Park


So Hae (Irene) Park is a fifth-year Human Genetics PhD student at the University of Michigan. Before attending U of M, she received her BA in Biological Sciences and Philosophy at Cornell University. Now under the joint supervision of Drs. Thomas Wilson and Thomas Glover, Irene is investigating what causes genome instability—an accumulation of mutations in the cells—and how it can be avoided. Genome instability is commonly seen in many human diseases, like cancer. When she is not working during the wee hours in her laboratory or writing/editing for MiSciWriters or The Michigan Daily, Irene likes to watch crime documentaries, collect cute things, read books by comedians, and walk around Ann Arbor while listening to music. Follow her on Twitter (@S_Park89), find her on LinkedIn, or check out her online portfolio.

Editor-in-Chief: Ada Hagan


A co-founder of MiSciWriters, Ada Hagan is a doctoral student here at the University of Michigan in the department of Microbiology and Immunology. She does recon on the sneaky ways bacteria find nutrients (like iron!) when they are invading our bodies. Originally hailing from the mountains of East Tennessee, Ada earned both her B.S. and M.S. in Microbiology from East Tennessee State University. In her spare time, Ada spends time with her pets and husband, cooking, fishing & the occasional Netflix binge. Follow her on Twitter (@adahagan) and find her on LinkedIn.

Logistics Coordinator: Bryan Moyers


Our second co-founder, Bryan Moyers, is a doctoral student in the Bioinformatics program at the University of Michigan. Bryan’s research focuses on methodological problems in molecular evolution, and correctly inferring information from data. In other words, his research sheds light on problems with the methods commonly used in the field of Evolutionary Biology so that improvements can be made. Bryan holds degrees in Biology and Psychology from Purdue University. His interests are in science and education issues, philosophy of science, and the intersection of science and business. Outside of science, Bryan enjoys reading, running, hiking, and brewing/consuming beer. Find him on LinkedIn.

Communications Director: Alisha John


Alisha John is a PhD student in Molecular, Cellular, & Developmental Biology at the University of Michigan. A member of the Wittkopp Lab, Alisha studies how changes in gene expression contribute to different phenotypes seen in nature; more specifically, she is trying to figure out how two fruit fly species became very different in terms of coloration. Alisha is a Michigan native and earned her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Wayne State University in Detroit before making the jump into Biology. When she isn’t busy staring lovingly at Drosophila, you can find Alisha baking delicious desserts, enjoying some great Michigan beers, being an amateur foodie, and/or spending time with friends & family. Follow her on Twitter (@AlishaJohn) and find her on LinkedIn.

Grants Coordinator: Shweta Ramdas


Shweta is a graduate student in Bioinformatics at the University of Michigan. Her research involves studying computational methods to understand the genetic basic of psychiatric disease. Her undergraduate degree is from the National University of Singapore where she studied computational biology. Outside of research, Shweta enjoys reading, yoga, and figuring out the genetic basis for being a muggle (Don’t worry, she’ll let all of us know the secret when figures it out!). Follow her on Twitter (@shramdas) and find her on LinkedIn.

Communications Director: David Mertz

David is a biomedical engineering doctoral student and lifelong Michigan resident. Having recently earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University, he now works in the laboratory of Shuichi Takayama, developing better in vitro organ-on-a-chip and human-on-a-chip models for drug screening and disease study. In addition to his research and writing for the MiSciWriters blog, David also writes science-focused opinion columns for The Michigan Daily and enjoys training with the Ann Arbor Rowing Club. You can follow him on Twitter (@davrmertz) and connect on LinkedIn.