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REVU Fellows

REVU Fellows
Click the linked title of each fellow's research project title to view their final research presentation. 2023 posters coming soon!
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Trinh Phan

Identifying self antigens targeted by T cells in immunotherapy-induced fatal myocarditis

2023 REVU Fellow

2022 MIT & Harvard Warrior-Scholar Project Alumna

Trinh Phan was born and raised in Vietnam and immigrated to the US in 2016. Trinh joined the US Army while pursuing her Associate's Degree at Orange Coast College. She is currently serving in the U.S. Army Reserve as OR Specialist. During the summer of 2022, Trinh participated in the Warrior Scholar Project STEM Course at MIT and Humanity Course at Harvard University. Currently, Trinh is a rising senior at the University of California, Los Angeles, majoring in Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology, and minoring in Biomedical Research. During REVU 2023, Trinh worked at Lee Lab at Yale School of Medicine, with the aim of building a library of antigens that bind to the T cell receptors on both tumor cells and healthy cells which leads to immune-related adverse events (irAEs) when treated by immune blockage inhibitors. Trinh's goal is to continue serving the military community by becoming a military surgical oncologist or trauma surgeon to serve the service members, veterans, and their beloveds. In the last few years, Trinh founded an organization to demonstrate science experiments to children in an underserved community in Santa Ana and provide free tutoring services for the kids of undocumented families. She also spends time volunteering at a Hospice service and a free clinic while still playing the role model for the junior enlisted at her unit - 921st Field Hospital and taking care of her 5-year-old son. During her spare time, Trinh loves doing DIY projects, painting, baking, cooking, gardening, and taking care of the stray cats in her neighborhood.

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Christopher Connolly

Agile Drone Platform for Autonomous Vision-Based Search and Exploration

Professor Ian Abraham research group

2023 REVU Fellow

2021 Texas A&M Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Christopher, a Southern California native, enlisted in the Coast Guard immediately after high school. During his six years in the service, Christopher specialized as an Avionics Electrical Technician and helicopter flight mechanic, conducting search and rescue operations in the Gulf Coast. After leaving the military, Christopher enrolled in an engineering program at Houston Community College for two years and is currently a mechanical engineering transfer student at the University of Virginia. As a REVU fellow, he works in Dr. Ian Abraham's Intelligent Autonomy Lab helping to develop agile autonomous drone platforms that perform vision-based search and exploration. Christopher aims to continue engineering research and one day help advance the aerospace technologies he worked with during his time in the military.

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Vincenzo "Vinnie" Gallegos

Volume Dependency of Magnetically Levitated Superfluid Helium-4 over 0.5mm in Vacuum

Professor Jack Harris research group

2023 REVU Fellow

2021 MIT Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Vincenzo comes from the state of Arizona. On the precipice of graduating from Greenway High School, he was unsure of his journey in college and didn't want to use four years to study a subject he wasn't passionate about. With a desire to serve instilled from his grandfather's service as Navy Corpsman in World War II, he elected to join the Air Force. He served on active duty as a C-130 loadmaster for nine years and went wherever the plane went, leading him to see the world, its beauty, and its challenges. While serving, Vincenzo chose to return to school, which started with his first course in physics. He realized his career as a loadmaster, his flight manual, and the aircraft he had traveled the world in were embodiments of physics and mechanical engineering. Every principle and equation led to him doing what he loved‚ flying. Looking to take his knowledge to the next academic level he joined Warrior Scholar Projects 2021 MIT cohort. This experience gave him the confidence to apply to New York University, where he matriculated to study physics and mechanical engineering while also serving in the reserves as an HC-130J Rescue Loadmaster. Vincenzo was looking to pursue research and development in nuclear fusion in the future and was looking for an experience to cut his teeth as a scientist; REVU was a perfect fit. Currently, Vinnie is researching Quantum Optics at Yale University under Jack Harris's Lab Group. His lab is a mix of electrical and mechanical engineering, experimental physics, and theory. Vincenzo hopes to take the skills he learns as a researcher at REVU and continue his journey with science and engineering to help achieve nuclear fusion as a sustainable energy source to address one of the challenges he saw in the world while serving.

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Kenneth A. Simmons, Jr.

A Comparative Study of Bivalent Gene Expression of the Traf6 Promoter Gene and Changes in Epigenetic State between Mice and Humans

Professor Bluma Lesch research group

2023 REVU Fellow

2022 MIT Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Kenneth, a child of a military family, lived in various states and countries before his family settled down in Fayetteville, North Carolina. He enlisted in the Army in 2006 as a medical laboratory technician and later transitioned to a Special Operations Medic, serving fourteen years of active duty. After transitioning, Kenneth began attending community college, eventually discovering the Warrior-Scholar Project and completing the MIT STEM boot camp in 2022. Kenneth will continue his academic pursuits at Princeton University, where he will study Philosophy while meeting his pre-medical school requirements. Kenneth’s goal is to obtain his medical and juris doctor degrees, where he will utilize his unique military experiences to advocate for veterans and disenfranchised communities in healthcare.

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James Miceli

Unraveling cellular and molecular mechanisms required for embryonic tissue patterning

Professor Peggy Myung research group

2023 REVU Fellow

James is from CT and enlisted into the U.S. Army as a Healthcare Specialist in 2018. During his time in emergency medicine, especially with COVID-19 patients, James developed a passion for philosophy and laboratory medicine and hopes to pursue a career that can make challenging diagnoses a little bit easier for others. Currently, James is president of 3 student organizations, as well as the Veterans Assistant on campus through the VA.  He also writes for his University's marketing team and the College of Nursing and Health Sciences newsletter to celebrate the exceptional achievements of his peers, and often tutors other students.  Outside of studying Medical Laboratory Science and Philosophy, James is passionate about helping others gain access to rightfully earned resources in order to break biased social structures to improve socioeconomic standing.  Ultimately, he hopes to help other people find their own way through unique challenges.

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Ashley Vanegas

Understanding the Genetics Underlying Reproductive Barriers in Hybrid Plant Species

Professor Jenn Coughlan research group

2023 REVU Fellow

Ashley served in the U.S. Army as a surgical technologist assisting physicians during surgery on wounded warriors, veterans, and their families. Though she valued her work in healthcare, Ashley discovered her true passion when attending community college and participating in a campus-wide Earth Week campaign. Determined to achieve her educational goals, she separated from the military after eight years of service. Ashley is now a rising fourth year at the University of Virginia, majoring in Environmental Science with a specialization in Environmental and Biological Conservation. Her commitment to improving planetary environmental health led her to join the REVU program in the summer of 2023 and work in Professor Jenn Coughlan's lab. There, she researched reproductive isolation and speciation within a complex and diverse group of wildflowers along the Pacific Northwest. Ashley's ultimate goal is safeguarding ecosystems and communities affected by climate change through policy and educational reform. Her drive to create positive change and protect the environment for future generations sets her apart as a true advocate for a sustainable world.

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Christopher Chomiuk

Synaptic Density Loss in Patients with Chronic HIV

Professor Serena Spudich research group

2023 REVU Fellow

2022 Cornell & Yale Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Christopher grew up in Eden Prairie, Minnesota and enlisted in the Army in 2015. He served as a 35G Geospatial Intelligence Imagery Analyst, mostly working within the Special Operations community. After leaving the military, Christopher returned home and enrolled at the University of Minnesota to study neuroscience, with a minor in public health. During the summer of 2023, he worked in Dr. Serena Spudich's lab where he investigated the long-term impacts of HIV on different regions of the brain. He also shadowed Dr. Spudich's clinical rounds in the hospital's neurology department.

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Andrew Hicks

Using Normalizing Flows to Quantify the Non-Stationarity of Dwarf Galaxies

Professor Marla Geha and Dr. Farnik Nikakhtar research group

2023 REVU Fellow

Andrew hails from Huntsville, Alabama. He served in the US Navy for 6 years on the Virginia class submarine the USS New Hampshire. During this time he worked as a reactor operator, electronics technician, and scuba diver. After leaving the service he returned to school at the University of Colorado Boulder where he is currently studying Math and Physics. Upon finishing his degree, he plans to pursue a PhD in Astrophysics. He hopes to one day work as a professor where he may share his passion for learning and discovery with others.


Jessica Coutee

Understanding Evolution by Comparing Tongue Velocity in Salamanders

Professor Martha Muñoz research group

2022 REVU Fellow

2019 Texas A&M Warrior-Scholar Project Alumna

Upon graduating from Peabody Magnet High School in Alexandria, Louisiana, Jessica enlisted in the United States Army and served for six years as a 68S Preventive Medicine Specialist. After separation, she participated in The Warrior Scholars Project at Texas A&M and is now confidently pursuing a bachelor's degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Maryland at College Park. Her research in the Yale University's Muñoz Lab focused on discovering the evolutionary trade-offs of faster feeding methods in Salamanders. With the background and skills that she developed during REVU she plans to pursue additional research regarding both the declining bat populations across the U.S., and salamander research in the Dominican Republic. Jessica’s goal is to continue to expand her horizons while actively opening doors for others to follow by remaining an inquisitive learner and sharing her gifts as an inspirational poet.


Terren Wise

Enhancing Laser Locking Methods to a Fabry-Perot Cavity

Professor Jack Harris research group

2022 REVU Fellow

2021 Arizona University Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

After growing up in Minneapolis, MN, Terren enlisted in the US Navy in January 2013. Terren spent over 8 years s a nuclear mechanic in charge of monitoring and maintaining the chemistry and radiological aspects of submarine nuclear reactors. He currently attends Brown University and is majoring in Engineering. Terren worked in Dr. Jack Harris' lab studying optomechanics in the membrane-in-the-middle project. Passionate about helping others, Terren spends his time volunteering to help first-graders in reading and writing, as well as helping other veterans with the transition from military to academic service. Terren hopes to connect people across cultures and inspire others to pursue a STEM career.


Austin Salcedo

Teaching an Assistive Robotic Arm to Recognize and Respond to Human-Intent

Professor Ian Abraham research group,

2022 REVU Fellow

2020 MIT Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Austin was born and raised in Miami, FL and served four years in the Marine Corps as a Cyber Network Operator. After his enlistment, he spent three years studying at Orange Coast College and then transferred to Stanford University where he majors in Computer Science. During REVU 2022, Austin developed an interface for human-robot intent prediction (i.e., coded a face-following robotic arm) in Professor Ian Abraham’s Intelligent Autonomy Lab. He is interested in exploring robotic prosthetics moving forward. Above all else, Austin loves to eat an absurd amount of food with friends & family and then burn it all off by practicing Muay Thai or being walked by his dog.

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Catherine Escobar

Exploring cyanobacterial cell culture systems to investigate the protein complex that initiates photosynthesis

Professor Gary Brudvig's research group

2022 REVU Fellow

2021 Yale and 2022 Caltech Warrior-Scholar Project Alumna

Catherine Escobar is originally from El Salvador, where she lived until the age of 17. Catherine virtually attended the Warrior Scholar Project's first all-women cohort at Yale University. Following WSP, Catherine decided to return to college after working in mass vaccination/testing sites as a healthcare specialist during the COVID-19 pandemic. When Catherine became a medic in the New York National Guard, it was the first time her family's last name was in an American Uniform, and now she is proud to say that her last name is at an American Ivy League school. Catherine is working towards obtaining a Computer Science bachelor's degree at Columbia University in the city of New York.


David Cantong

A Tale of Rescue: Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease and the C-Terminal Tail of Polycystin-1

Professor Michael J. Caplan's research group

2022 REVU Fellow

2020 Yale Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

David grew up in Southern California and enlisted in the Marine Corps after graduating high
school. He spent six years in the Marine Corps Reserve before joining the Army to become a
Special Forces Soldier. During his time as a Medic, David had the opportunity to treat patients in both the deployed and hospital setting. He is currently teaching limited resource and austere medicine courses, where he found a passion for research and education. David is studying health science at Campbell University with a minor in psychology. During the REVU program, David worked in the Caplan Lab on Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease and studied how a specific protein affects the disease progression. David’s ultimate goal is to continue serving his community through education and medicine by becoming an Emergency Medicine or Critical Care physician. His hobbies include spending time with his wife and two daughters, endurance sports, and enjoying good food with friends.


Taylor Tjosaas

Cognitive Changes in Patients Living with HIV

Professor Serena Spudich's research group

2022 REVU Fellow

2019 Yale Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Originally from California, Taylor joined the military as a pararescueman in Portland, Oregon in 2012. After six years on active orders, Taylor became a reservist and began civilian work as a flight paramedic in Papua New Guinea. While traveling the world and treating patients, he spent his free time exploring new areas of interest and engaging in self-study. He ultimately discovered an interest in human cognitive sciences and decided to return to school and fully immerse into education. Two years later, he moved to Connecticut to study neuroscience at Wesleyan. As a 2022 fellow, Taylor worked in the Spudich lab. He conducted neuropsychological tests, shadowed patient care, and found evidence of cognitive decreases in people living with HIV. After graduation he plans to continue studying cognitive science and patient care. Outside of school, Taylor can be found playing board games or traveling around in his big yellow van.

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Daisy Rosalez

Militarizing Bacteriophage Therapy As Tomorrow's Weapon Against Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria:Driving Specialization of E2 Phage Against E.coli

Professor Paul Turner's research group

2022 REVU Fellow

2022 MIT & Harvard Warrior-Scholar Project Alumna

Daisy is currently a sophomore at Williams College and is majoring in biology. She serves in the US Air Force reserves and has worked in Aerospace Maintenance during her tenure in the US Air Force. This summer, Daisy studied Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria in Dr. Paul Turner's lab. Daisy's goal is to utilize her disciplined academic focus and jovial creativity to learn under the guidance of experts in the field and support their mission. She is a special programs coordinator for Bioneers' Native Youth Leadership Program which works with native and non-native youth across the country. The program focuses on supporting indigenous-led cultural programming, cross-cultural communications, and the use of technology to bridge intergenerational cultural gaps.

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Kenny Thai

Kenny Thai was born and raised in Houston, Texas. After high school graduation, Kenny sought out a challenge and enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. He served for five years as a flight equipment technician specializing in H-1 attack helicopter safety and survival equipment. Kenny then returned home to pursue medicine and is currently an undergraduate student at the University of Houston pursuing a degree in nutritional sciences. This summer, Kenny conducted research in Dr. Bluma Lesch’s genetics lab studying the role of bivalent chromatin on gene expression. Kenny is preparing his applications to medical school with the goal of helping to preserve the health of his community. During his free time, Kenny enjoys trying foods from various countries as a means of cultural exploration.


William Hernandez

Identifying Low-Mass AGN Using Spectra

Professor Marla Geha's research group,

2020 REVU Fellow

2017 Yale Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

After graduating from high school, Will enlisted in the United States Navy as a Nuclear Propulsion Plant Operator. Following ten years of active duty service, he separated from the Navy and went back to school with help from the Warrior-Scholar Project. He is currently studying Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of Colorado-Boulder. During the summers, he continues to support the Warrior-Scholar Project so he can continue to help other veterans as they work towards their higher education goals. In his spare time, Will enjoys listening to music, reading books, jogging, and playing video games. Ultimately, he would like to find a way to share his love of astronomy with youth groups composed of people that are typically underrepresented in the sciences, with a particular focus on diversity and inclusion within the field of Astronomy.

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Daniel Allen

Anisotropic Properties of the Upper Mantle Beneath New England

Professor Maureen Long's research group

2019 REVU Fellow

Daniel enlisted in the Army in 2012 and served as a rifleman in 2nd Ranger Battalion, as well as a Sniper in the 101st Airborne Division. After separating from the Army, he worked as an Animal Packer for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Daniel is currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in geology at Highline Community College in Washington. He plans to attend graduate school after graduation. Daniel was a member of the varsity wrestling team and 2019 NJCAA National Championships participant and he is an avid mountain biker and rock climber.

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DeLia Kennedy

The Fight Against Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease

Professor Michael Caplan's research group

2019 REVU Fellow

2020 Yale Warrior-Scholar Project Alumna

DeLia Kennedy is currently working on her Bachelors of Science degree in Biology at Hampton University. Immediately after high school she joined the Navy and was stationed in Norfolk, VA where she served four years at sea as a personnel specialist. Her Navy experience was adventurous and very beneficial to her personally. DeLia holds associate degrees in Science and Social Science from Tidewater Community College. After graduation from Hampton University, DeLia is planning to attend medical school and pursue a career in the medical field and is particularly interested in pathology with an ultimate goal of becoming a forensic pathologist.

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Frederick Cordova

Tracking the Drosophila’s Movement When Faced with a Chasm

Professor Damon Clark's research group

2019 REVU Fellow

2018 Arizona University Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Frederick Cordova was born and raised in San Diego. He has served in the United States Navy as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal technician where he gained the knowledge and expertise on the safe rendering of a variety of conventional and unconventional explosives. After a successful career in the Navy, Frederick is now attending Columbia University to study Computer Science with an emphasis on artificial intelligence. He is also an active member of Columbia's Military Veteran Organization and a first string member of Columbia's Rugby team.

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Haris Gargovic

The Role of miRNAs in Regulation of Chromatin Bivalency

Professor Bluma Lesch's research group

2019 REVU Fellow

2018 Yale Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Haris Gargovic was born in Skokie, Illinois where he resided until he was eighteen. After graduating early from Niles West High School, he joined the United States Marine Corps as a Combat Engineer. While serving in the Marine Corps, Haris spent time stationed in North Carolina and Okinawa, Japan where he attended Coastal Carolina Community College and University of Maryland University College. After separating from the Marine Corps in 2018, Haris attended the Warrior-Scholar Project STEM program at Yale University. Haris attended Oakton Community College in Des Plaines, Illinois where he served as the Vice President of Student Veterans Club and Club Officer of Sustainability Club. Haris now attends Yale University.

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Jared Fox

Optimizing the Study of Quantum Optomechanics in Super Fluid Liquid Helium

Professor Jack Harris's research group

2019 REVU Fellow

2016 Yale Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Jared Fox is currently a student at El Camino College in Torrance, California. He is a United States Marine Corps veteran where he spent five years working as a ground electronics technician, specializing in microminiature repair. Jared attended the Warrior-Scholar Project STEM program at Yale University in 2016. He plans to transfer to a four-year institution in the fall of 2020 in pursuit of a degree in electrical engineering. After college, Jared plans to use his degree to pursue a job in research in the defense industry. During his free time, Jared enjoys learning about computer programming.

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Justin Jensen

Mapping molecular and cellular events during dermal condensate differentiation

Professor Peggy Myung's research group

2019 REVU Fellow

2016 Oregon State University Warrior-Scholar Project Alumnus

Compelled by the events of 9/11, Justin enlisted in the U.S. Army. After basic training, Justin had the opportunity to attend the Special Forces Qualification Course. Justin completed the rigorous training, earning the coveted Green Beret. While in the military, Justin had the profound experience of medically treating the casualties of war. Having to solve problem sets in the domain of medicine gave Justin a great respect for science, humanity, and the ability to offer hope to people in hopeless situations. These new-found passions lead to Justin leaving the active duty military to pursue a degree as a Pre-Med Biology student. Justin currently attends Baylor University with plans to attend medical school in hopes of becoming a healer. As a healer, Justin plans to impact his community as a humanitarian leader by providing services that give people hope during times of hopelessness.

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Teresa Carter

Using Growth Curves to Quantify Bacterial Resistance to Phage

Professor Paul Turner's research group

2019 REVU Fellow

Teresa Carter is originally from Long Beach, California and currently resides in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Teresa is a twenty-six-year-old Marine Veteran. She attends Middle Tennessee State University and studies psychology/pre-medicine. Teresa is a student worker in the college’s chemistry department, the veteran's center, and the President of the college’s student veteran organization. She has a passion for helping fellow veterans with social and emotional issues. After college, Teresa plans to become a psychiatrist so she can continue assisting veterans and their families.

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