VGEM Welcomes You!

Jonathan Bethke

Jonathan is a third year who has recently completed his BS in Biology at the University of Virginia. The creative outlet of IGEM has reaffirmed his interest in synthetic biology, particularly in a biomedical context. He hopes to pursue further study in this field and will be applying to graduate programs in the fall. In addition to IGEM, he works in a lab devoted to the development of novel antiviral drugs. His free time is often spent staring wistfully out windows, doodling obscure designs, repurposing lab equipment in truly meaningful ways, and masterfully crafting only the most conspicuous jokes.

Gregory Brown

Greg is a second year majoring in Biomedical Engineering. Synthetic biology’s vast potential to benefit so many people attracted Greg to iGEM. He loves biology and is interested in its medical applications, but he does not intend to practice medicine. While a dedicated and hard worker in lab, Greg enjoys his free time and loves a nice afternoon on the links or grilling with friends.

Bethany Bruno

A second year at the University of Virginia, Bethany is considering a major in neuroscience or human biology. In the virtually nonexistent time that she's not watching Grey's Anatomy, Bethany can be found furiously studying in the library, researching in the lab, or working as a medical scribe in the ER until the wee hours of the morning. She enjoys skiing, hiking, baking, playing the harp, and, most importantly, catching up on sleep. Bethany is interested in the medical applications of synthetic biology, and she plans to become a physician.

Surbhi Gupta

Surbhi is a 3rd year biology major who plans on attending medical school in the Fall of 2014. She can most often be found with her nose in a book, fundraising for her Relay for Life team, volunteering at the hospital, or in an intense game of cards with her friends. Synthetic biology’s relevance to medicine drew her to the team, but the prospect of contributing to a promising project has made her most excited about participating in iGEM.

Elizabeth Kelly

Elizabeth is a 3rd year studying biology (surprise, surprise) at THE University of Virginia! When she is not traipsing about the lab, Elizabeth enjoys writing love songs about her exes and wearing sundresses with cowboy boots. Be sure to tell her she looks just like Taylor Swift. She loves it. Although she still aspires to be Sutton Foster's understudy, Elizabeth’s first love is science, and she plans to go to grad school to continue living the dream as a research scientist.

Christopher Langguth

Chris is a 4th year biology major and bioethics minor. He is a human being, aspiring biologist, amateur musician, expert unicycler, etc. He was first attracted to iGEM for its novel utilization of an open source catalog that fosters community development in synthetic biology and which serves as a practical solution to problems surrounding intellectual property. When Christopher is not discussing the perils of molecular neoliberalism and genetic reductionism in the bioethics department, he enjoys practicing wilderness survival skills and experimenting as a mixologist of craft cocktails.

Christopher Cai

Chris is a 2nd year (=sophomore) biomedical engineer. When he’s not busy trolling the basketball courts of Charlottesville , embarrassing himself in front of girls, or dancing to the band Miracles of Modern Science, Chris enjoys typical UVa activities such as daintily sipping the finest Arnold Palmers while admiring the regal southern architecture at Mr. Jefferson’s University. Chris hopes to improve the health in developing nations through research and advocacy. He wishes you all peace, love and lots of wahoowah.

Richard Lee

Richard is a second year mechanical engineer at UVa. In his free time, he enjoys soccer, basketball, volleyball, and ultimate frisbee. Otherwise, he can be found killing time late into the night watching Arrested Development. Richard became interested in synthetic biology because of the potential to build logical circuits and machinery out of biological parts. He hopes to continue researching future applications for the use of minicells.

Joshua Leehan

Josh is a 3rd year biology major at Mr. Jefferson’s University. His academic interests include synthetic biology as a tool for environmental remediation and other humanitarian efforts. When not in the lab or the library, he likes to take pictures of the world while camping, vacationing or hanging out with friends in addition to his passion for film, music and the occasional video game. Josh also enjoys playing his guitar loudly in his fraternity house late into the night, disturbing some of his roommates. After attending grad school, Josh plans to make our world a less toxic place.

Elyse McMillen

At the ripe age of 13 weeks, in the state of Colorado, Elyse decided to work on reducing the number of “dumb blonde” jokes by pursuing a life of science. She is now coming into her second year as a Chemical Engineer at UVa and loving every new thrill that comes with microscopes and chemical reactions (lighting things on fire). The promise of spreading knowledge and aiding in future scientific endeavors makes Elyse excited about the future of iGEM and engineering in general. When not reading textbooks on a patch of grass in the glistening outside world, she enjoys butchering the french language, singing in the rain, and the bizarre combination of sticks and galloping horses commonly called polo.

Matthew Tucker

Matt is a rising 3rd year Chemical Engineering Student at the University of Virginia. He has an international background as he lived most of his life overseas in places like Brussels, Belgium. Matt is very enthusiastic about scientific discovery and finding applications for these scientific endeavors. Outside of the technical world, he enjoys outdoors activities, making various kinds of art, listening to every kind of music, and debating philosophical topics. He hopes to do big things with his life and for general contentment for all.

Jessica Yoo

Jessica is a 2nd year biology/history double major from Raleigh, NC. She enjoys reading at coffee shops (unsweetened Americano, no cream), as well as snorkeling for tropical fish and exploring art museums. During the school year, she can usually be seen typing up lab reports into ungodly hours of the morning and reading esoteric works for her humanities classes. Her favorite sports include basketball, volleyball, snowboarding, squash, and tennis, although she has also become quite adept at micropipetting— a skill she has refined through working in iGEM, joining a biochem lab, and engaging in specialized calisthenics for her opposable thumbs... Her primary interests include public health in Latin America and biomedical research.

Shaun Moshasha

Shaun is a graduate student in the McIntire Commerce program. He graduated from UVA in 2013 with a BS in Biochemistry and a BA in Physics. He was a member of the 2012 iGEM team and loved it so much he decided to stay on another year. When Shaun is not in the lab, he enjoys reading, playing any type of sport, playing chess, and playing the piano or the guitar. He also has quite a culinary touch and will attempt to make any type of food created by his imagination. As an intellectual, Shaun enjoys learning about a variety of topics, including science, business, religion, philosophy, music, art, and he loves crafting things with his hands. Eventually, Shaun hopes to settle down with a wife in a nice country home, but not before building and selling at least 3 companies.