2015 Honor Society Inductees G-K

A-C   D-F  G-K  L-M  N-R  S-Z

Elizabeth Gonye
Elizabeth GonyeElizabeth became interested in science at a very young age. Her dad was a professor of molecular biology and used to bring home empty pipette tip boxes for Elizabeth and her sisters to play with. Ever since then, she has been fascinated with understanding how the world works. At the University of Richmond, she is involved in molecular biology research that is attempting to characterize a protein whose dysfunction may be linked to schizophrenia. After graduation, she hopes to take a gap year working in a lab and then complete a graduate school program for her PhD in molecular biology or biochemistry. During her senior year at UR, she hopes to stay involved with the local ASBMB student chapter, continue her research, and continue her extracurricular knitting hobby.

Shaina Hasan
Shaina HasanShaina first became interested in science when she had the opportunity to participate in her first science fair project in junior high. She enjoyed the hands-on nature of science and finally had the chance to participate in critical thinking. From then on, she was always drawn to her science classes and subsequent projects. As her time in science progressed, she became more interested in the biochemical and molecular mechanisms involved in development, immersing herself in undergraduate research related to these topics. Shaina is currently working on a project that focuses on the molecular genetics of the model plant organism Arabidopsis thaliana, investigating how plant peptide hormones affect the development of the root, as well as how different genetic backgrounds result in varied phenotypic responses to these hormones.

In terms of extracurricular activities and hobbies, she has been trained in classical Indian dancing, in the style of Bharatanatyam, for the past sixteen years and performs on a regular basis in front of various audiences. Additionally, she is passionate about sustainable work in developing countries and she volunteers with the organization Global Brigades, traveling to Honduras and Panama to help set up and run medical clinics in underserved communities. 

Her ideal career is comprised of research that focuses on the molecular mechanisms involved in disease development and how those findings can be used to improve current medical treatments employed in developing countries. She plans to apply for various MD/PhD as well as MD/MPH programs, with the ultimate goal of becoming a physician scientist.

Chelsea Karacz
Chelsea Karacz

Chelsea became interested in science at a very young age. For as long as she can remember, she wanted to grow up to be a veterinarian; but after taking an Honor’s Biology course in high school, she became fascinated with the field of biomedical research. This passion has encouraged Chelsea to pursue a BS/MS in Bioscience Technologies at Thomas Jefferson University, where she is currently involved in small intestine and colorectal cancer research. During her studies at Thomas Jefferson University, she became involved with UAN and co-founded a student organization called the Science Outreach Network. Serving as the Co-President of the Science Outreach Network and being an active member of Jefferson’s UAN has allowed Chelsea to further develop her leadership skills, expand her professional network and participate in several community science outreach events. After she graduates from Thomas Jefferson University in June, Chelsea will begin a post-baccalaureate training program at the National Institutes of Health. She will then pursue a PhD and delve into the field of cancer research. Chelsea’s career goals include collaborating with scientists from different disciplines, nationally and internationally, to develop novel cancer therapeutics.

Lea Kiefer
Lea KieferLea Kiefer is an international student from Germany. Growing up in close proximity to the main facilities of BASF SE in Ludwigshafen, she had been exposed to chemistry from an early age. Based on her growing interest in scientific research, she decided to pursue her undergraduate degree in the US at the University of San Diego. On campus, she quickly became involved in the international community. She served on the executive board of the International Student Organization planning events to integrate incoming internationals into the college community. In addition, she also played an important role in establishing Dr. Joseph Provost’s undergraduate research lab on campus. As one of his first research students, she contributed to the overall organization of the lab as well as the training of new students. Lea graduated from USD in December 2014 and is planning on attending graduate school for Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics in September 2015. After completing her PhD, she is planning on staying in academics and conducting research related to cancer. In her free time, she likes to engage in all sorts of outdoor activities including biking, rock-climbing and tennis. Lea is currently working on the involvement of the sodium-hydrogen exchanger (NHE1) in non-small cell lung cancer metastasis.