The BioInteractive Team
Multimedia Content Development
With a background as both a scientist and an educator, Sat develops content for the BioInteractive website — in particular in the areas of neuroscience, physiology, and quantitative skills. Sat has a knack for distilling complex topics into engaging visuals and simulations. Read more Before joining HHMI, Sat studied zoology at the University of Oxford, UK, as an undergraduate, received his PhD from Cornell University, studying the brain mechanisms of perception in electric fish, and did postdoctoral research in the auditory physiology of birds at the University of Maryland, College Park. He has taught neurobiology, comparative physiology, and general biology to undergraduate students.
High School Outreach and Professional Development
Sydney worked in urban education prior to joining HHMI. At BioInteractive, she conducts outreach to high school teachers, particularly within large school systems, and works with educators and school administrators to deliver tailored professional development in a variety of settings. Sydney also manages BioInteractive’s social media channels and newsletter. Read more Sydney holds undergraduate degrees in biology and writing from the University of Pittsburgh, and a master’s degree in teaching from American University. Prior to joining HHMI, she taught biology, AP Biology, and research at a public magnet school in Washington, DC. She was also deeply involved in DC public schools’ Next Generation Science Standards roll-out and in the AP Biology teacher community, as well as editing the Unity and Diversity teacher writing project.
Laura joined HHMI with over 20 years of experience in science communication and editorial management. She is responsible for the overall direction of the BioInteractive team and keeps a hand in multimedia development, particularly with the classroom films and associated classroom resources. Read more Laura earned a PhD from the University of Toronto, Canada, conducting research on the genetics of Wilms tumor, and then spent two years as a postdoctoral fellow at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund (now Cancer Research UK) in London. She left the bench to join the editorial team of Nature magazine and has since worked as a science writer and managing editor for a wide range of influential print and online science publications including Nature, Nature Medicine, Nature Genetics, Science, Cell, Alzforum, and various NIH publications and websites.
Director, Outreach and Professional Development
Jennifer oversees all of BioInteractive’s outreach and professional development efforts. She has over 15 years of experience in life science education outreach and community building, and actively seeks strategic partnerships designed to support and improve science teaching. Read more Jennifer studied biology and paleoprimatology at the University of New Mexico. Before joining HHMI, she worked as a consultant matching not-for-profit organizations with corporate partners to scale up public awareness campaigns about issues in healthcare and education.
Director of Evaluation
As a researcher with expertise in science education, educational technology, and research and evaluation methods, Marjee oversees the evaluation of all BioInteractive’s programs and initiatives. Marjee also directs the evaluation of informal science education initiatives by HHMI’s film production unit, Tangled Bank Studios. Read more Prior to joining HHMI, Marjee worked as a high school chemistry and physics teacher and technology administrator. She left the classroom to work in editorial development of multimedia science education content, most recently with the Smithsonian Institution. Marjee earned her PhD at George Mason University in research and evaluation, and her MA and BS degrees at Marquette University. She was a Spencer Educational Research Fellow and recently served as a Fulbright Specialist in science education working in beautiful Bandung, Indonesia.
Strategy Manager and Multimedia Content Developer
Bridget came to HHMI with over 12 years of experience working with conservation organizations on ecological research and communications. At BioInteractive, she manages strategic planning for content development and serves as project manager for the BioInteractive website. Bridget also produces multimedia resources focused on ecology. Read more Bridget earned her master’s degree in zoology from the University of British Columbia, where she researched the ecology of reintroduced buffalo and wildebeest in Mozambique. She spent 9 years with the Gorongosa Restoration Project, a nonprofit organization working to restore Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique, communicating science and conservation messages through print, digital, and interactive media.
Manager, Outreach and Professional Development
Melissa was an educator for over 10 years in high school and community college settings. At BioInteractive, she focuses primarily on outreach and content development for undergraduate introductory biology courses. She also manages logistics for all outreach and professional development events. Read more Before she began teaching, Melissa managed a research lab in the cardiology department at the University of Pittsburgh. She holds a master’s degree in Chemical and Life Sciences from the University of Maryland.
Fabian de Kok-Mercado
Fabian is an award-winning director and creator of science visualization and interactive media and a certified medical illustrator. He directs the production of animations, interactives, print media, branding, identity art, and implementation of emerging technologies for BioInteractive and HHMI’s film production unit, Tangled Bank Studios. Read more Fabian received his master’s degree from the Medical and Biological Illustration graduate program at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (JHUSOM). He is currently a board member of the Board of Certification of Medical Illustrators and is an active member of multiple professional organizations. He also co-instructs an annual graduate-level course, Molecular and Cellular Visualization, at JHUSOM and frequently gives workshops and presentations at professional meetings. Fabian was inducted as a Fellow of the Association of Medical Illustrators (FAMI) in 2018. His work has appeared in a myriad of publications, films, and interactive media and has been recognized by organizations such as the National Science Foundation, Telly Awards, the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, the Biocommunications Association, and the Association of Medical Illustrators.
Senior Program Assistant, Outreach and Professional Development
Amy provides pre-event and on-site support for outreach and professional development events of all types. She also assists with evaluations and other support for the BioInteractive team. Read more Amy graduated from Cornell University with her BS in Animal Science prior to obtaining her MS in Animal Sciences at the University of Florida. Her research focused on equine genetics and behavior, specifically investigating the startle response and associated genetic polymorphisms.
Visiting Science Education Fellow
David joined BioInteractive on sabbatical from the University of Florida, where he is an associate professor. He is involved in a variety of projects developing content primarily for undergraduate biology and anatomy and physiology classes. Read more David’s research focuses on stress physiology, strategies to increase the retention and graduation of under-represented STEM students, and the development of web-based simulation tools for teaching undergraduate human physiology. He is PI and director of the UF Bioscience Scholars Program, the SF2UF Bridge to the Baccalaureate Program, and the UF MARC GatorSTAR Program, which all engage early undergraduates in research, and he directs the Cross-Disciplinary Laboratory (X-Lab) program, which integrates biology, chemistry, and physics content in novel, competency-based laboratory courses for freshmen and sophomores. David earned a PhD in Physiology from UCSF and MA and BS degrees from San Francisco State University.
Multimedia Content Development
Having taught and conducted research in geology, oceanography, microbial ecology, and engineering, Mark produces a variety of multimedia resources for the BioInteractive website. His particular areas of focus include data-rich interactive media and apps, and anything earth science-related. Read more Mark earned a PhD in oceanography from Oregon State University. He was a National Science Foundation fellow and conducted research on using microbial fuel cells to harvest energy from marine sediments. Following his graduate program, he was a postdoctoral research fellow at Harvard University in the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, working on microbial ecosystems at hydrothermal vents. Prior to focusing on scientific research and education, Mark was a consulting groundwater geologist for a water-resource consulting firm for five years.
Aleeza has a wide breadth of experience teaching and developing science curriculum for secondary and college courses, for both formal and nonformal education providers and settings. At BioInteractive, she supports classroom resource development, editing, and curricular alignment, while overseeing all aspects of resource accessibility. Read more Aleeza earned her master’s in Teaching from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, where she was part of a cohort of professional scientists trained in classroom pedagogy. Before her career in education, Aleeza conducted research on volcanics at Rutgers University and ran the GeoChem lab at Rutgers University. For 9 years, Aleeza was a field geologist specializing in environmental remediation in the northeast and mid-Atlantic. She also created and managed an innovative multi-faceted sustainability program for a large non-profit in Baltimore.
Higher Education and Spanish Language Outreach and Professional Development
Javier came to HHMI after a career researching invertebrate antiviral immunity and teaching undergraduate biology and genetics. At BioInteractive, he facilitates professional learning for educators interested in implementing BioInteractive resources for student-centered teaching. Javier also oversees the translation and implementation of Spanish-language resources. Read more Javier earned his MS in marine, estuarine, and environmental sciences from the University of Maryland, and his PhD in cell and molecular biology from the Medical University of South Carolina. His research focused on the molecular mechanisms and evolution of antiviral defense in arthropods. Before joining HHMI, he did postdoctoral research at the University of Maryland and Stony Brook University, while pursuing his passion for science education as a lecturer at Northern Virginia Community College.
Chuck joined BioInteractive after working for several years in HHMI’s Department of Science. He oversees all business affairs, including budgets, contracts, staffing, and support matters. Chuck also manages all permissions and licenses. Read more Chuck received his PhD in physiology and biophysics from the University of Illinois Chicago. He conducted research on neutral lipid metabolism at the National Institutes of Health for 10 years prior to joining HHMI in 1999 to work on the International and Investigator programs. Chuck has had an ongoing interest in science education and served on instructional advisory committees for his local school board.
Science Editor and Multimedia Content Development
Esther is a scientist and editor with several years of experience in educational technology. At BioInteractive, she works on the development of a variety of multimedia resources and serves as the editorial manager for the team. Read more Esther earned her PhD in a joint program between the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Her research focused on developing mathematical population models to tackle a variety of ecological and evolutionary analyses. Prior to joining HHMI, she spent three years as a science curriculum designer for IXL Learning, a Bay Area edtech company that specializes in K-12 education.
Video Post-Production Supervisor
With a background in science and expertise in graphic arts production, Chris is a master of all trades at BioInteractive. He oversees all technical and logistical aspects of the BioInteractive website, shoots and edits videos, authors DVS, produces print and online advertisements, and serves as the postproduction supervisor for classroom films. Read more Chris holds a dual BS in biochemistry and integrated science from Northwestern University, and an MS in biology from the University of Michigan. His tenure at an ad agency in Wilmington, Delaware, gave him a background in graphic arts, design, and print and video production. Before joining HHMI, he worked in the IT department of the National Institutes of Health, teaching classes in print and media production and website creation.
Senior Program Assistant
Shimiya comes to HHMI with over a decade of professional experience in public service organizations including; healthcare, education, advocacy and economic development. At BioInteractive, she is able to utilize her extensive program management experience and her passion for helping others to assist with logistical and administrative support for a demanding annual schedule of over 200 professional development activities for educators. Read more Shimiya holds a BA in Psychology from Temple University.
Science Visualization and Web Specialist
With a background of science and medical illustration, Li collaborates with other members of the BioInteractive team to create graphic designs, illustrations, animations, 3D models, and interactive media. She also provides technical support for BioInteractive’s online professional development courses and the BioInteractive website. Read more Li earned a BS degree in Biological Science and an Honorary Degree of Science for interdisciplinary training at Zhejiang University. She continued her research training at Cornell University, where she studied nuclear architecture and regulation of transcription and received a MS degree in Genetics. Recognizing the challenges and importance of science communication, Li changed her career path and pursued her passion in science education after receiving a MA degree in Medical and Biological Illustration at Johns Hopkins University.