SURPAS Leadership 2021-2022

Chinyere Iweka

Chinyere is a 3rd year Postdoc in the Neurology Department, studying the effect of circadian rhythm disruption on immunometabolism and stroke. Her goal is to understand how disruption of circadian rhythms predispose one to stroke injury by studying its effects on metabolic pathways in immune cells, as well as the effect of this disruption on post-stroke severity and outcome. In addition to her studies, she is an AP Biology instructor for the Stanford Online High School, where she will be able to indulge my love for teaching and hopefully inspire young potential scientists.

When not engaged in research or teaching, She is immersed in my full-time job as a mom of 3, conveying them from school to one activity or the other. Chinyere believes that her greatest achievement is attaining and maintaining a feasible and healthy work-life balance, as it relates to science, time management and nerves of steel. At other times, she is working to promote diversity in STEM by working with ACT-SO and reaching out to students of color at the high school level. STEM is very intimidating and it is important for students to know that it is achievable.

Chinyere’s aspirations as SURPAS Co-Chair is to advocate for affordable housing, healthcare, retirement benefits, diversity and inclusion, and child-care benefits for postdocs. Together, she believes we will work to ensure postdocs continue to have a VOICE at Stanford University.

Chuchu Wang

Chuchu is a second-year postdoc in the Axel Brunger lab. She got her Ph.D degree of cell biology in Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai and currently research focuses on understanding the lipid membrane effects on synaptic proteins’ structures in aging. Chuchu likes traveling and has been to many countries and regions, which enlarges her vision on different cultures and different nations. She enjoys making friends and listening to their stories or experiences, which attracts her to run for the Co-Chair of SURPAS. She aims to increase the influence of Stanford postdocs’ work for letting them feel deserved of the efforts they paid in Stanford. Beside of work, she likes playing badminton, swimming and reading.

Arianna Celis Luna
Advocacy Coordinator

Arianna is a second-year postdoc in the labs of Dr. David Relman and Dr. KC Huang. Originally from Mexico, she spent most of her life in Southern California and then did her graduate work at Montana State University in Bozeman, MT before coming to Stanford. Her current research focuses on understanding iron processing by gut bacteria and determining whether there is an association between certain microbiome compositions and the development of iron-deficiency anemia during pregnancy. Arianna enjoys meeting new people, interacting with people from different departments, and learning new things, which has landed her in her current role as SURPAS Advocacy coordinator. Outside of work, she spends her time running with the Los Altos running team, swimming, practicing Olympic lifts, and cooking.

Rohini Datta
Events Coordinator

Rohini is a 2nd-year Dean’s postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Genetics, working on therapeutic RNA editing in neurodegenerative diseases. Her PhD research at the Indian Institute of Science focused on HIV vaccine design. She is passionate about solving outstanding problems related to human health and disease.

Outside the lab, Rohini is a science journalist for Science and a STEM mentor for various organizations – Science is ElementaryStanford BioSci, and Association for Women in Science, to name a few. As an avid science communicator, she routinely delivers scientific talks to students in her home country of India. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, checking out new restaurants and listening to The Beatles.

Rohini believes that academic pursuits should provide for an equitable representation of people across gender, race, and socioeconomic backgrounds. As SURPAS Events Coordinator, she intends to build a community of postdocs who respect diverse perspectives through events promoting inclusion and belonging.

Vimala Bharadwaj
Communications Director

Vimala is a 3rd year postdoc in the Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, focusing on migraine pathophysiology and treatments. Her goal is understanding the changes in the brain microenvironment during a migraine attack to ultimately develop novel therapeutics.

Through grad school and postdoctoral training, Vimala has looked for ways inspire young minds and promote researchers from minority groups. She has volunteered at Connect2STEM and Girls in STEM events and served on multiple panels as a part of Graduate Women in Science (GWIS) AZ chapter. Also, she has served as the social media and communication chair for the GWIS AZ chapter, promoting women in STEM.

As a Communication Director, she aims to promote SURPAS to help recruit new minds and leaders. Vimala will work with the SURPAS team to provide an efficient platform for postdocs to connect and communicate. She hopes to advocate for our postdocs through a strong social media and web existence. Outside of research and SURPAS, she enjoys photography and hiking.

Julia Abitbol
Operations Manager

Julia is a 2nd year postdoc in the Otolaryngology Department, studying the biology and mechanisms of cochlear supporting cell regeneration. Her ultimate goal is to study and develop strategies for treating hearing loss. Before starting her postdoc, she moved from Canada where her PhD research focused on gap junction mutations in hearing loss. She is passionate about advancing technologies and contributing to science that may help others. Currently, she is part of the Teaching & Outreach and JEDI committees. Julia enjoys meeting new people, enjoying the outdoors, and reading. As Operations Manager of SURPAS it’s my goal to continue to build this community, continue to recruit and engage our SURPAS team, and together advocate for our postdocs.

Peng Gao
Finance Officer

Peng is a 2nd-year postdoc in Mike Snyder’s Lab in the Genetics Department. He is the Financial Officer of SURPAS 2021-2022. His research focuses on environmental health sciences and studies how environmental agents affect human health. He is familiar with accounting procedures, following financial policies, managing financial records, preparing financial budgets, proceeding reimbursements, and administering awards or grants. Personally, he likes to study various financial products to make extra income. He is willing to bring his financial skills to SURPAS and learn how the structure of SURPAS works through its financial actives. By being a member of the SURPAS leadership team, he is always here to help every Stanford postdoc.

Kun Lyu
Social Media and Web Manager

Kun is a 1st-year postdoc in Mike Snyder’s Lab in the Genetics Department with a research focus on health data science, wearable technology and metabolic health. He is experienced with digital art, graphic and website design and hope to contribute his skills to help better connect the postdoc community at Stanford.

Ioana Marin
Community Engagement Liaison (1st Term)

Surbhi Sharma
Community Engagement Liaison (2nd Term)