Beckman Scholars Profiles

Mikayla Barry
  • Mikayla Barry '17
  • Major: Biomedical Engineering
  • Project(s):

    Scientist II at The Clorox Company, 2021-present

    PhD University of California, Santa Barbara, Materials Research Laboratory, Dr. Rachel Segalman, 2017-2021. The design and study of hydrated polymer surfaces. 

    Undergraduate Research Scholar Thesis: Dynamic Whole Blood Study of Silicone Modified with PEO-Silane Amphiphiles

Brooke Versaw
  • Brooke Versaw '18
  • Major: Chemistry
  • Minor: Business Administration
  • Project(s):

    PhD candidate, California Institute of Technology, July 2018–present. Analysis of structure-property relationships in mechanochromic polymers.

    Undergraduate Research Scholar Thesis: Natural Product-based Engineering Polymers: A Special Emphasis Toward Degradable Polycarbonate Materials from Quinic Acid and Cellulose (Pending Publication)

Gabrielle Lessen
  • Gabrielle Lessen '18
  • Major: Biochemistry
  • Project(s):

    MD/PhD candidate, UTSouthWestern, 2018-present. The Effect of Inflamation on Glycolslation of Intestinal Epithelial Cells.

    Summer Undergraduate Research Institution for the Study of Kidney Disease (SURISKD Program), University of Texas Southwestern Participant

    Undergraduate Research Scholar Thesis: Determining the Individual Roles of Telomere-Associated Proteins in Telomere Regulation in Arabidopsis 

Jennifer Tran
  • Jennifer Tran '18
  • Major: Biochemistry and Genetics
  • Minor: Biology and Classics
  • Project(s):

    PhD candidate, Microbiology at University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2018-present. Using CRISPRi tools to map cell envelope pathways in Acinetobacter baumannii.

    Undergraduate Research Scholar Thesis: Genetic Characterization of Single-Stranded RNA Phage Lysis Genes 

Ashley Holt
  • Ashley Holt '19
  • Major: Biomedical Engineering
  • Project(s):

    MD/PhD candidate, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2020-present

    Texas A&M University, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics College Station, Texas | Research Technician, January 2020 – August 2020

    Undergraduate Research Scholar Thesis: How Bacteriophage PhiKT Breaks Free: A New Phage Lysis Protein (Pending Publication)


Luke Oaks
  • Luke Oaks '19
  • Major: Biomedical Engineering
  • Project(s):
    Bray International, Inc. | Houston, TX  | July 2019 – Present Controls Engineer

    Undergraduate Research Scholar Thesis: Improving Transformational Teaching and Learning by Advancing Higher Education Feedback-Based Dialogues at Texas A&M University 
    URS advisor: Heather Wilkinson
Rachel Porter
  • Rachel Porter '19
  • Major: Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Project(s):

    PhD candidate, Molecular Cell Biology at Stanford University, 2020-present

    Fulbright Scholar at the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia with Dr. Nina Gunde-Cimerman studying the Greenland ice sheet microbiome.

    Undergraduate Research Scholar Thesis: Circadian Regulation of Ribosomal Protein Composition in Neurospora crassa

Cody Martin
  • Cody Martin '20
  • Major: Biochemistry and Genetics
  • Project(s):

    PhD candidate, Bacteriology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2020-present

    Undergraduate Research Scholar Thesis: Molecular, Genetic, and Biochemical Analysis of the Phikt Disruptin: A New Class of Lysis Proteins (Pending Publication)

Ryan Rahman
  • Ryan Rahman '22
  • Major: Biology
  • Project(s):
    MD/PhD candidate, Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, 2022-present

    Beckman Scholars, Dept of Biology. Investigation of the signals that regulate bacterial destruction after engulfment by Dictyostelium discoidium.
Brandon Lookfong
  • Brandon Lookfong '22
  • Major: Biomedical Engineering
  • Project(s):
    MD/MS at EnMed, 2022-present

    Beckman Scholars, Dept of Molecular Medicine. Explore the use of functionalized protein materials to treat peripheral neuropathy.

    Aggies Invent: removing microplastics from the ocean environment 2020
    Aggies Invent: develop portable energy unit for natural disasters 2019
    Aggies Invent: develop indoor navigational technology for hospital patients 2018
Allison Baker
  • Allison Baker '23
  • Major: Biology
  • Advisor: Dr. Bruce Riley
  • Project(s): Beckman Scholars, Dept of Biology. Regeneration of hair cells and neurons of the zebrafish inner ear.
Emily Chapa
  • Emily Chapa '23
  • Major: Biology
  • Advisor: Dr. Deborah Bell-Pedersen
  • Project(s): Beckman Scholars, Dept of Biology. Studying the circadian rhythm control of protein translation.
Connor Bowerman
  • Connor Bowerman '24
  • Major: Physics
  • Research Focus: Particle physics and the Standard Model, nuclear energy, applied physics, superconductors
  • Advisor: Dr. Peter McIntyre
Miriam Stein
  • Miriam Stein '24
  • Major: Molecular & Cell Biology
  • Research Focus: The role of mitochondrial membrane composition on function.
  • Advisor: Dr. Vishal Gohil
  • Project(s): Investigating mechanisms of potential therapeutic agents for human genetic disorders of copper deficiency.
Samantha Fehlis
  • Samantha Fehlis '26
  • Major: Chemistry
  • Minor: Economics
  • Research Focus: Organic Chemistry, Polymer Chemistry, Environmentalism
  • Years of Research Experience: 0
  • High School: Basis Shavano HS
Travis “Horton” Richard
  • Travis “Horton” Richard '25
  • Major: Biochemistry
  • Advisor: Dr. Vishal Gohil
  • Project(s): Correcting mitochondrial defects in Barth syndrome models by stimulating mitophagy.
Samuel Idah-Oze
  • Samuel Idah-Oze '25
  • Major: Biomedical Engineering
  • Advisor: Dr. Gerard Coté
  • Project(s): Design and testing of Wearable Point of Care Medical Devices.
Trevor C. Martinez
  • Trevor C. Martinez '26
  • Major: Biology
  • Research Focus: Chemorepulsion, Gene Analysis, Biology
  • Years of Research Experience: 1
  • High School: Bishop High School