Diverse Voices in FSU STEM

April 2022 Speaker

On April 5, 2022, Monica Abou Harb will join the conversation.

As a Lebanese woman working in scientific research, Monica thought that her options were limited and that the career path she wanted was unrealistic. However, after completing her Master’s degree in Molecular Biology where Monica simultaneously taught biology courses at her university, she decided to pursue her doctoral degree in Biomedical Sciences. Monica was so excited to take her experience in research and teaching and translate it into resourceful data collection and analytical skills. Now Monica gets to study EBV-associated cancers and in the future hope to explore targeted cancer therapeutics.

March 2022 Speaker

On March 22, 2022 Antje Muntendam will join the conversation.

Antje Muntendam, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Spanish and Linguistics in the Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics at Florida State University. Dr. Muntendam received a Ph.D. in Hispanic Linguistics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and an MA in Hispanic Linguistics from Leiden University in the Netherlands. Her main area of research is language contact and bilingualism. In her research, Dr. Muntendam combines sociolinguistic and psycholinguistic methods and approaches. Broadly speaking, her sociolinguistic research focuses on contact-induced linguistic change and the role of social factors, whereas her psycholinguistic research is concerned with online bilingual processing. Dr. Muntendam has conducted extensive fieldwork on Quechua (an indigenous language) and Spanish in Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru. In addition, she has worked on heritage languages in the Netherlands and the United States.

November 2021 Speaker

On November 2, 2021, Jesusa Legaspi will join the conversation.

Jesusa C. Legaspi, Ph.D. is a Research Entomologist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture- Agricultural Research Service / Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology. Dr. Legaspi obtained her Ph.D. in Entomology at Purdue University, Indiana, USA; M.Sc. in Applied Entomology at the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, U.K. and B. S. Biology at the University of the Philippines – Los Banos, Philippines. She is co-Director of the Center for Biological Control and Courtesy Associate Professor at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, FL. Her current research involves the use of sustainable technologies and natural control agents of insect pests in organic crops. Dr. Legaspi’s research work experience includes working in international, national, federal agencies and state universities. 

Recording of Dr. Legaspi’s talk.

October 2021 Speaker

On October 5, 2021, at 3:30 p.m. Stephen Chelko from FSU’s College of Medicine will join the discussion.

Stephen Chelko, PhD is a physiologist and professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at Florida State University College of Medicine (FSUCOM). He studies the impact of exercise and myocardial inflammation in Arrhythmogenic Cardiomyopathy (ACM), a dreadful disease contributing to sudden cardiac death in the young and in athletes. Dr. Chelko’s laboratory utilizes cell and animal models of ACM to uncover abnormal 0cell signaling mechanisms that give rise to ACM disease phenotypes, such as cardiac dysfunction, arrhythmias, and fibrotic scarring of the heart’s walls. He has extensive experience (>15yrs) testing the efficaciousness of small molecule inhibitors and works with pharmaceutical giants, Novartis and Pfizer, testing FDA-approved drugs in pre-clinical animal models of heart disease.  He is pleased to be part of a collaborative network of clinical and basic researchers performing translational studies with animal and cellular models of ACM, internally, externally, and abroad. While Dr. Chelko often jokes that he may not be the “ideal” face of diversity, as he identifies as a cis-gender, Caucasian male, he has experienced numerous forms of anti-LGBTQIA+ discrimination in academia. That said, Dr. Chelko often states “any anti-LGBTQIA+ discrimination I have endured, has undoubtedly, only strengthened my resolve and propelled me to achieve more. Not only in my career, but to strengthen this resolve in other members of the LGBTQIA+ community, women and people of color.

Recording of Dr. Chelko’s presentation — captions coming soon

September 2021 Speaker


On September 7, 2021, at 3:30 p.m. Carleen Sabusap will begin the Inaugural Diverse Voices in FSU STEM on Zoom.

Carleen Sabusap, PhD is a molecular biologist studying lung diseases with an interest in the healthcare industry and inequities in medicine. She also loves scary movies and rock climbing, though not at the same time. She graduated from Florida State in 2013 with a degree in biology and chemistry.

Recording of Dr. Sabusap’s presentation.

Slides used in Dr. Carleen Sabusap’s presentation on September 7, 2021.

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