Speaker Schedule

Diverse Voices in STEM Symposium March 2, 2023

Location: Great Hall of the Honors, Scholars, and Fellows House (HSF), 4th floor

9:30 a.m. – Event Check-in starts

10:00 a.m. – Opening Remarks

10:10 – 11:00 a.m. – Dr. Anand “Sunny” Narayanan

Dr. Anand “Sunny” Narayanan is currently a Research Faculty at Florida State University (FSU). Sunny holds a Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in Medical and Space Physiology, and B.S. degrees from West Virginia University in Mechanical Engineering and Biology.

Sunny took his first professional steps with NASA supporting systems engineering computational projects at the Katherine Johnson Independent Verification and Validation Facility, completing team-based design-build-fly projects through NASA’s Microgravity University program, and conducting nanotechnology biomedical research as a Ronald E. McNair Scholar.

He continued his academic steps at Texas A&M University, supported by the National Space Biomedical Research Institute for his doctorate to study physiological adaptations of astronauts during their journey in space. While his research focus was of the lymphatic and immune systems’ adaptations to spaceflight and clinical conditions, Sunny also led and supported interdisciplinary projects on topics including musculoskeletal, digestive, and cerebral science. His doctoral work also involved opportunities at Brookhaven National Labs, International Space Station spaceflight biomedical projects (Rodent Research-3, 9, and 18 and Rodent Research Reference Mission-2), National Institutes of Health-funded studies, and NASA Kennedy and Johnson Space Centers. Now as a Research Faculty, he continues his support of NASA’s space program, leading and supporting multiple biomedical studies investigating the physiological effects of deep space radiation, Lunar, and Martian gravity, relevant to our human space exploration goals as we return to the Moon and beyond through the Artemis program.

11:10 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.- Dr. Amy McKenna

Dr. Amy M. McKenna is an analytical chemist at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, and a Research Faculty III at Florida State University. Dr. McKenna is the manager of the Ion Cyclotron Resonance user program, and specializes in complex organic mixture analysis by ultrahigh resolution FT-ICR mass spectrometry, which spans dissolved organic matter, petroleum and crude oil fractions, soil organic matter and weathered oil from natural and anthropogenic releases. Dr. McKenna has published more than  is a firm believer in the power of community colleges and the role they have in preparing students for the STEM fields. A former community college graduate herself, she currently serves as a research faculty member at the Magnetic Field Laboratory (MagLab). The MagLab is home to a cadre of world-class scientists and engineers who conduct high-level research recognized nationally and internationally. In 2013, Professor McKenna received the Glenn Award from the Energy and Fuels Division of the American Chemical Society, and in 2010, was awarded the Richard A. Glenn Award for the best paper. She is a graduate of the University of Tampa and Florida State University and has published numerous works on environmental chemistry, works with students throughout the country and researchers to improve the inclusion of women and girls in STEM. She has mentored over 200 students and researchers in the application of advanced analytical chemistry to solve environmental challenges.

12:00 – 1:00 p.m. – Lunch

Vegan and Gluten-free options available

1:00 – 1:45 p.m. – Graduate Student Panel Presentations

Ashley Arcidiacono

Ashley Arcidiacono is a 5th year Ph. D. candidate in Chemistry. She graduated from Villanova University with her B.S. in Chemistry. There, she worked under Dr. Jared Paul, investigating candidates for light-activated ruthenium based anti-cancer prodrugs. As a current member of the Hanson Research Group at Florida State University, she investigates light-matter interactions as they relate to molecular structure at hybrid organic-inorganic interfaces. Ashley previously served as an executive board member of Graduate Women in STEM (GWIS) and organizer of their annual “Art in STEM” event. She believes that science is for everyone and actively pursues wats to share science in a way that is exciting and accessible to the public. 

Camille Lewis

Camille Lewis, an experienced educator and community advocate, is currently a third-year student in the Educational Psychology: Learning and Cognition doctoral program. In addition to being a student, Camille is also the CEO of Earth’s Garden LLC, where she engages in agricultural education and teaches individuals and families the practice of organic and sustainable farming. 

Dorianis Perez

Dorianis Perez is a fifth-year PhD Candidate in Computational Science with a Fire Dynamics concentration in the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Institute (GFDI) at Florida State University. She is a first generation Dominican-American college student and the first person in her family (on both sides) to pursue a PhD. The path to her success has been anything but linear. She graduated from Hofstra University in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Forensic Science with a Chemistry concentration. She then attended Mercyhurst University and graduated with a Master of Science in Forensic and Biological Anthropology in 2016 where she was involved in recoveries and analyses of human remains in forensic cases. After her masters, she decided to delve back into the field of applied mathematics through graduate study at Florida State. She wanted to explore new challenges and wasn’t afraid to dive right back into math and computational science courses. Today, she is a Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) and GEM Fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory(LANL) in Los Alamos, New Mexico working in the Continuum Models and Numerical Methods group. Her research deals with developing new methods to simulate large wildfire events that produce thunderstorms (pyrocumulonimbus clouds) and studying the effects of vorticity on wildfires.

2:00 – 2:30 p.m. – Graduate student panel Q & A

2:30 p.m. – Closing Remarks