CV

EDUCATION/TRAINING

Purdue University (2009-14)
Degree: PhD Physics, May 10th, 2014                              GPA: 3.94
Area of Interest: Biophysics and Energy Research
University of Louisville (2005-09)
Majors: Physics and Mathematics, Minor: French

Degree: B.S., Summa Cum Laude, May 2009                  GPA: 4.00

AWARDS AND HONORS

Arnold O. Beckman Postdoctoral Fellow (2015-present)
Humboldt Postdoctoral Research Fellowship (declined)
National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (2011-2014)
Lijuan Wang Memorial Award – outstanding female graduate student (2012)
Purdue Doctoral Fellowship (2009-2011)
University of Louisville Grawemeyer Scholarship – one of 10, research component, full tuition, stipend
2009 Bennet Award in Physics – awarded to an outstanding senior in physics
2007 Bullitt Award in Mathematics - awarded to the most promising undergraduate math major
Sigma Pi Sigma Physics Honors Society

Pi Mu Epsilon Mathematics Honors Society

RESEARCH

Princeton University – Chemistry Department, Prof. John T. Groves                        2016-present
Penn State University  Chemistry Department, Prof. Amie Boal

Studies on various Fe-containing Metalloenzymes and their Synthetic Analogs via X-ray Methods

Princeton University – Chemistry Department, Prof. Nozomi Ando                           2014-2016

Studies on Radical SAM Enzymes via X-ray Structural Methods

Purdue University – Physics Department, Prof. Yulia Pushkar                                   2009-2014
Studies on Water Splitting in Photosystem II and Other Sunlight-to-Energy Assemblies
  • Time-resolved laser pump/x-ray probe absorption (EXAFS, XANES) and emission (most commonly Kβ) spectroscopy, to analyze the electronic states and structures native to the catalytic Kok cycle occurring in the Mn4Ca cluster of photosystem II (PSII), the metalloprotein complex in the photosynthetic process responsible for splitting water, and other artificial systems relevant to the photolysis of water.  Experimental analysis and modeling of x-ray induced damage progression in metalloproteins. Modeling EXAFS from DFT generated coordinates. Other responsibilities involve PSII sample preparation from spinach, oxygen evolution and chlorophyll assay measurements, EPR characterization of samples, capturing later catalytic states via laser advancement and subsequent fast-freezing (~ms timescales).

University of California Irvine – Earth System Science, Prof. Todd K. Dupont           June-August 2008
Control Methods and Inversion Techniques to Determine Ice Stream Basal Friction Fields
  • Using the MacAyeal-Morland equations (derivatives of Navier-Stokes), I employed optimization techniques to minimize the cost function of the data-to-model mismatch. Resulted in my undergraduate thesis: “Control Methods and Inversion Techniques to determine Ice Stream Basal Friction Fields.”

University of Louisville – Physics Department, Dr. Lutz G Haberzettl, and Prof. Gerard M. Williger
Data Reduction of Near-IR Images in the Clowes-Campusano Large Quasar Group           July-August 2007
  • Subtracted thermal backgrounds to create an averaged image and reduce noise.  The final product was a large combined image to easily analyze galaxy positions and fluxes.

POSTERS/PRESENTATIONS 

  • Advanced Photon Source User Seminar Series, Argonne National Lab (Mar. 17, 2017), "Structural Characterization of a Novel RiPP-modifying Radical SAM Enzyme" – Invited Talk
  • Simmons College Department of Physics and Chemistry Seminar (Nov. 9, 2015) “Physics, Chemistry and Spinach: Investigating How Plants Split Water” – Invited Talk
  • 1st Annual Princeton Chemistry Department Retreat (Oct. 2-4, 2015) “Investigating the Anatomy of Enzymes” – Best Poster Award.
  • University of Louisville Physics Department Colloquium (Sept. 12, 2014) “X-ray Emission Analysis of the S-state Intermediates of the Photosystem II Protein Complex” – Invited Talk
  • DESY CFEL, Hamburg, Germany (July 17, 2014) “X-ray Emission Analysis of the S-state Intermediates of the Photosystem II Protein Complex” – Invited Talk
  • APS User Meeting, Argonne National Lab. (May 12-15, 2014) “X-ray Emission Analysis of the S-state Intermediates of the Photosystem II Protein Complex” – Invited Talk (& poster).
  • 16th International Congress on Photosynthesis Research, St. Louis, MO. (Aug. 11-16, 2013) “X-ray Emission and Absorption Analysis of the S-state Intermediates of the Photosystem II Protein Complex” – Poster.
  • Purdue University Biophysics Symposium, West Lafayette, IN (2013), “Time-resolved X-ray emission analysis of photosystem II light induced transformations.” – Talk.
  • APS User Meeting, Argonne National Lab. (May 6-9, 2013) “X-ray Emission and Absorption Analysis of the S-state Intermediates of the Photosystem II Protein Complex” – Poster.
  • 38th Annual Midwest/Southeast Photosynthesis Meeting, Turkey Run, IN. (Nov. 9-11, 2012) “X-ray Emission and Absorption Analysis of the Photosystem II Protein Complex at Room Temperature & Low Temperature” – Best Poster Award 
  • 38th Annual Midwest/Southeast Photosynthesis Meeting, Turkey Run, IN. (Nov. 9-11, 2012) Short Talk on Best Poster (see above)
  • Gordon Research Seminar on Photosynthesis, Davidson College, NC. (July 7-8, 2012) “Time-Resolved Mn Kβ X-ray Emission Spectroscopy Analysis of the Photosystem II Protein Complex” – Poster.
  • APS User Meeting, Argonne National Lab (May 7-10, 2012) “Time-Resolved Mn Kβ X-ray Emission Spectroscopy Analysis of the Photosystem II Protein Complex” – Poster.
  • Office of Interdisciplinary Graduate Programs’ Spring Reception, Purdue University – West Lafayette, IN. (April 4, 2012) “MiniXES spectrometer for Mn Kβ analysis of samples with sub-micromolar Mn concentrations” – Poster.
  • APS User Meeting, Argonne National Lab. (May 2-5, 2011) “MiniXES spectrometer for Mn Kβ analysis of samples with sub-micromolar Mn concentrations” – Poster.
  • Graduate poster presentations at Purdue University (2010-2014)
  • Posters-at-the-Capitol (Feb. 2009) “Ice Stream Dynamics” Frankfort, KY – Poster. 

TEACHING EXPERIENCE

  • Guest Lecturer, Chemistry Department, Princeton University, 2015
  • Teaching Assistant, Physics Department, University of Louisville, 2008-2009
  • Physics and Mathematics Tutor & Review Lecturer, REACH, University of Louisville, Fall 2007 – 2009
  • Grader, Linear Algebra – Mathematics Department, University of Louisville, Fall 2007 – Spring 2008
  • MCAT Tutor (physics section) – 2008.

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

  • 5th BioSAXS Essentials Training Workshop (CHESS - Cornell) - 2014
  • Secretary, Forum on Graduate Student Affairs, American Physical Society, 2013 – 2015
  • Ultrafast X-ray Summer School (DESY-Hamburg) – 2013
  • Executive Committee Member, Physics Graduate Student Association, Purdue University, 2013 – 2014
  • Member, Women in Physics (WIP), Purdue University, 2009 – 2014
  • Member, Women in Science Programs (WISP), Purdue University, 2009 – 2014
  • Member, American Physical Society, 2007 – present
  • President, Society of Physics Students, University of Louisville, 2008 – 2009
  • President, Mathematics Club, University of Louisville, 2007 – 2008
  • Université de Québec à Chicoutimi – intensive summer language program – 2006