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Hi! Im Ev :)

pronounced as in "Evelyn"

pronouns: she/they

An Ev selfie on a hill in San Franisco. She is wearing a pink sweater, striped top, and diva sunglasses. In the background you can see Alcatraz island on this sunny day.

Who I am

Currently, I am a Ph.D. candidate in the lab of Dr. Kang Shen at Stanford University. My thesis work focuses on understanding how the nervous system is built in the nematode C. elegans. I am interested in dissecting how neurons physically grow through complex tissues to form functional circuits that control animal behavior. Further, I believe that scientists have a fundamental duty to share our knowledge of the world with others - in formal classrooms and in the public sphere. Given stark inequities across society and our age of rampant misinformation, this is an ethical imperative. As such, I co-created and co-lead a novel graduate student-led course for undergraduates at Stanford. Our aim is to bring the "hidden curriculum" of how to succeed in the academy to the classroom and broaden participation in STEM research. This experience has ignited my passion for equitable education and increasing the accessibility of STEM for all. Outside of the lab and classroom, I enjoy reading (thanks Mom and Dad!), exploring cities and parks, and coffee (lots of coffee...). I also enjoy cooking and baking for my gluten- and diary-free diet.

How I got here

I was born and raised in Akron, Ohio to two librarian parents. I first got interested in neuroscience at 4 years old when my brother suffered a traumatic neurological injury during birth. (I was dismayed to learn that the nervous system can't just repaired itself!) This interest lay dormant until I went to the University of Notre Dame for my undergrad and joined the lab of Dr. Cody Smith. In the Smith lab, I became enamored with research as a way to understand the world and answer questions like the one that 4 year-old me was interested in. After Notre Dame, I moved to Stanford and joined the Shen Lab for my graduate work. In 2022, I came out as a trans woman. It was a long journey to get to that point, and I am overjoyed that I now  fully embrace myself and my queerness. Further, I have come to recognize my neurodivergence and how our current systems clash with my needs as a neurodiverse trans woman. Despite this, I can trace many opportunities in my life to my other identities as a white person raised in a middle class family who presented as male for 25 years. For me, these privileges and opportunities converged to allow me access to elite educational institutions (another privilege). Moving forward, I hope to use the privilege I have to help reform educational and scientific systems built on patriarchy and white supremacy. 

A view from my Sunday coffee shop, Backyard Brew in Palo Alto. You can see my half drunk latte in the foreground next to my copy of "Dear America" by Jose Antonio Vargas. i nteh backgorund is a red flowered bush growing next to a parking garage.
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