Jessica Jowais was born and raised in Orlando, Florida. She is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Biology at the University of Central Florida. Her passion for biochemistry led her to become a UCF SARC tutor for Organic Chemistry 2. Jessica is currently researching the variation of induced secondary metabolite response across the genus helianthus to the pathogen Alternaria alternata under the guidance of Doctor Bohlen and Doctor Mason. She plans to obtain her Ph.D. in Biochemistry and become a college professor and academic researcher. She is interested in Biochemistry, Microbiology, Plant Science and Molecular Biology.
Jennifer Carvel was born and raised in Miami, Florida. She is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Biomedical Sciences . Her passion for alleviating homelessness has led her to begin a non-profit organization, Hearts for the Homeless Orlando, that provides blood pressures screenings to the homeless in addition to general heart health information and free clinic locations. Jennifer is currently researching the efficacy of social services on the homeless in terms of alleviating psychological homelessness. She plans to obtain her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and become a college professor.
Sarah Davenport was born and raised in Naples, Florida. She is pursuing her bachelor’s degree in Anthropology. Sarah is passionate about environmental and food sustainability which has led to her active involvement as a volunteer with organizations such a Hebni- an African American founded nutrition consult organization- teaching food insecure populations how to grow their own food in a practical way. Her current research, conducted under the guidance of Dr. Joanna Mishtal, is concerned with the agenda and practices of an environmental sustainability focused organization in Central Florida, and how they incorporate sustainability initiatives and equity. Upon completion of her bachelor’s degree, Sarah plans to attend graduate school and attain a Ph.D. in sociocultural anthropology with which she will use to continue to conduct applied research and work as a professor.
Kevin Negy was born in College Station, Texas and was raised in Orlando, Florida. He currently is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in computer science. After graduating from UCF in 2013 with degrees in International Global Studies and Spanish, he worked as an English teaching assistant in southern Spain for two years. While in Spain, he decided to return to UCF to study computer science and has since become involved in research during his undergraduate studies. He currently is working with Dr. Avelino Gonzalez on a project with the objective of creating a driving model using observational learning to identify dangerous driving. He also is assisting Dr. Kenneth Stanley on a project investigating the evolution of constructive agents that create block structures in a virtual world. He plans to obtain his Ph.D. in Computer Science en route to becoming a university professor and using his position as a professor to assist fellow aspiring students.
Thomas Rechtman was born and raised in São Paulo, Brazil. Thomas immigrated to Florida in 2013, where he began his college career at Seminole State College of Florida. There he was exposed to higher levels of mathematics in Algebra and Graph Theory. He also performed research on the topic of Graph Energy. His research interests lie on Algebraic Graph Theory and Epidemiology. Thomas aspires to mentor underrepresented groups in the STEM fields as they advance into higher education. Also he has plans to pursue a PhD in mathematics and become a researcher at a University or a governmental agency such as the CDC and NASA.
Cassandra Sarria was born in Miami, Florida. She is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in biology. Her passion for animals urged her to dedicate her life to understanding how they behave and interact with the world. She is currently researching viruses that plague global amphibian populations under the guidance of Dr. Anna Savage. She plans to obtain her Ph.D in behavioral genetics to eventually study the effects of animal consciousness on behavior.
Joey Velez-Ginorio is pursuing a bachelor's degree in Computer Engineering with a minor in Mathematics. He has involved himself with several volunteer organizations across his undergraduate career: Limbitless Solutions, I.D.E.A.S., AAP Ambassadors, and the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Native Americans and Hispanics in Science. His current research focus is in Computational Cognitive Science & Artificial Intelligence, where he seeks to build computational models for different features of human cognition - in an effort to build better A.I. With this, Joey plans to matriculate into academia, where he can pursue these ideas in the long term.
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