UBRP Ambassadors

Mission and Goals

Mounir Koussa
The UBRP Ambassadors are student representatives for the Undergraduate Biology Research Program. We also act as liaisons of the program to the University of Arizona and Tucson community. The Ambassadors aim to strengthen the UBRP community by providing a number of opportunities for students to interact with each other and with others outside the UBRP community. The UBRP Ambassadors aim to enrich the undergraduate research experience for the program’s students and help them understand the importance of being engaged with the community as scientists.

2016-2017 UBRP Ambassadors


Head shot of Cathy TranCathy Tran
Year: Senior
Major: Neuroscience and Cognitive Science
Research: Glial-Neuronal Cell Interactions in the Brain
Professional Goal: Pharmacy School
I love to take pictures, play the horn, and make people smile!


Vice President & Volunteer Chair:

Head shot of Ben ZaepfelBen Zaepfel
Year: Senior
Majors: Biochemistry, Molecular and Cellular Biology, Physiology
Research: Dysregulation of RNA-Binding Proteins in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
Professional Goals: To research cancer and teach biology at the collegiate level
I enjoy rock climbing, hiking, and consuming all forms of potatoes!



barrows-jordanJordan Barrows
Year: Senior
Major: Biochemistry/Molecular and Cellular Biology
Research: Metabolic Dysregulation in a Drosophila model of ALS
Professional goal: Earn a PhD and continue on in academia
Other: I love to ride my bike, play music, and hike!



rajguru-poorvaPoorva Rajguru
Year: Senior
Major: Biomedical Engineering
Research: Determining plant telomerase function using functional genetics
Professional Goal: Improve quality of life
I enjoy to hike, meet new people, try new things, and constantly learn!




Kai Aragaki
Year: Junior
Major: Biochemistry/Molecular and Cellular Biology
Research: Increasing Avidity and Specificity of Binding Using Multiheterovalent Ligands
Professional Goals: Pharmacy/Pharmacology
I’m a cat-petting, science-loving caffeine processing machine.

badwal-areenAreen Badwal
Year: Sophomore
Major: Neuroscience and Cognitive Science
Research: Neural Pathways for Vocal Behavior using the Zebra Finch Songbird model
Professional goals: Medical school
I love to read, hangout with my friends, and do science!


curry-roslynRoslyn Curry
Year: Senior
Major: Biology
Research: Soluble Guanylyl Cyclase Characterization
Professional Goal: Environmental Health Research on Navajo Reservation
I enjoy drawing, walking, and all things science.


Wilber 281 cleaned upJohn Kim
Year: Junior
Major: Neuroscience and Cognitive Science
Research: Molecular Constituents of the Blood-Brain Barrier
Professional Goals: MD-PhD in Neuropsychology
I love biology, food, and video games. Team Mystic!!!


ragone-michaelMichael Ragone
Year: Junior
Major: Electrical and Computer Engineering
Research: Modeling Spatial Navigation in Hippocampus
Professional Goal: Applied Math Research
I am a huge coffee geek, play guitar, and love all sorts of science and math.


shahin-tala-pngTala Shahin
Year: Sophomore
Major: Biochemistry and Physiology
Research Description: Plantar Fat Grafting for the Treatment of Remissive Diabetic Foot Ulcer
Professional Goals: Medical School
I love film-making, photography, cycling, experimenting with cooking, and hiking!

vining-roseRose Vining
Year: Senior
Major: Environmental Science
Research: Plant biomass and chemical composition changes across a permafrost thaw gradient
Professional Goal: Graduate school and a research position
I love to play the violin and competitively ballroom dance!


Past Events

  • Tie dyeing lab coats
  • Cake walk/annual picnic
  • Science and Politics Panel
  • Know Your Propositions
  • HHMI Luncheon
  • Holiday Party
  • Finding Your Mentor Presentation
  • Potluck Party