Erin grew up in rural Pennsylvania, not far from Philadelphia. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry and Physics from Hofstra University and is currently studying Cellular and Molecular Biology as a PhD Candidate at the University of Pennsylvania. Her current research involves designing and testing a vaccine to prevent against Hepatitis C infections.
As the President of PSPDG, Erin is involved in many aspects of the group. She manages relationships with outside organizations, guides the executive board in planning and hosting events, leads the Policy initiatives, runs the Diplomacy initiative, and creates Communication content in video form.
Reno grew up near Allentown, Pennsylvania. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Computer Science, Mathematics, and Economics from Vassar College, and is currently a PhD candidate in Computer Science at the University of Pennsylvania. His research involves helping computers better understand human language, and specifically to automatically simplify difficult texts to make them easier to understand for younger students, second language-learners, and people with learning disabilities.
As Vice President of PSPDG, Reno helps with event planning, website construction, and communicating with those in the School of Engineering. He is interested in learning about how to effectively regulate technology companies, as current policy struggles to keep up with the field’s rapid growth and expansion into many aspects of modern society.
Ambika grew up in various cities across India. She moved to the US for an MS Biology degree at NYU, which she completed in January 2017. Shortly after that she began work as a Research Specialist in the Weissman Lab at the University of Pennsylvania. Her main focus is to prepare mRNA for the vaccines produced by the lab, as well as expand the platform to improve productivity.
Her role as the Communications Chair entails internal and external communications via social media, email, and other avenues to ensure the smooth functioning of the group as a whole, alongside event organisation and coordination. She is passionate about encouraging Scientific Communication within and without the Scientific community.
Camille is French but has mostly lived outside of her home-country. She lived in Asia (Korea, Japan, China, and Singapore) for 15 years, then moved to Montreal, Canada, for her Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Psychology. Now, she is in the 1st year of her PhD in Neuroscience at the University of Pennsylvania, where she works in the laboratory of Dr. Michael Platt. Her current research involves studying the brain of primates engaged in social behaviors, and understanding the course of primate brain evolution.
As the Media Chair of PSPDG, Camille is the producer and host of the group’s podcast, organizes workshops to improve scientists’ communication skills, and leads projects to bridge the communication gap between Penn Scientists and the community of Philadelphia.
Anne grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, but has completely embraced life in the city. She earned her undergraduate degree from Temple University where she double majored in Neuroscience and Spanish studies. Following graduation she worked in the Behavioral Neurophysiology Lab at Temple, which sparked her interest in addiction research and the neural mechanisms at the intersection of stress and drug taking. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Pharmacology, working in the lab of Dr. Elizabeth Heller.
Anne is our resident writer for the blog, and managed guest writers. In addition to her work planning events and strategizing, Anne also helped create and design the website.