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Board Members 2015-2016

Photo of Hilary Beckmann.Hilary Beckmann, 2015-16

Graduate School of Management
Other campus affiliations: Women in Leadership Club, Graduate Researcher at the Energy Efficiency Center

Hilary is a second year MBA student at the UC Davis Graduate School of Management (the GSM). Hilary has over nine years of experience in management roles. Her focus is achieving operational and financial success in organizations with an “impact focus.” Prior to commencing her studies at the Graduate School of Management, Hilary specialized in Green Building and led the Sustainability team at Macquarie University Property in Sydney, Australia as part of a $3B construction expansion project. Hilary was a co-founding Board member of Sydney’s first Transport Management Association (Macquarie Connect) and the tertiary education representative on the Green Building Council of Australia’s technical Advisory Panel. In addition to her role representing the Graduate School of Management in the Chancellor’s Graduate Student Advisory Board, Hilary is the President of the Women in Leadership Club at the GSM as well as a Graduate Researcher at the Energy Efficiency Center. Hilary has a Master's of Environmental Science and a degree in Communications and Journalism (minor in law) from Macquarie University, Sydney.

Photo of Alejandro Castaneda. Alejandro Castaneda, 2014-2016

Immunology Graduate Group
Other campus affiliations: Graduate Student Association Representative

Alex Castañeda is a fourth year immunology Ph.D. student currently working in the laboratory of Dr. Kent Pinkerton. His dissertation work is to understand the molecular mechanisms of allergy and asthma, including the role air pollution plays in enhancing these disease processes. Currently, he is investigating the use of dendritic cell inhibitors to attenuate allergic inflammatory responses. His interests also include pharmacology and drug development. Alex received a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Biology from UC Irvine in 2008 and a Master’s of Science degree in Biology from CSU Bakersfield in 2011.

Photo of Arik Davidyan.Arik Davidyan, 2015-16

Molecular, Cellular and integrative Physiology

Arik is a Ph.D student at the Molecular, Cellular, and Integrated Physiology program. His interests are exercise physiology, as well as nutrition and aging. He is a husband and a father.  Arik received his bachelor’s degree here at UC Davis. He was born and raised in Israel, and served as an officer in the Israeli military for a little over 4 years.  Arik is very passionate about teaching, and would like to grow as a researcher and an educator during his time at UC Davis. In his spare time, Arik enjoys hiking and backpacking, running, playing soccer, and cooking. 

Photo of Laura Emberson.Laura Emberson, 2015-16

Soils and Biogeochemistry
Other campus affiliations: Graduate Fee Initiative Committee, Mentorship Advisory Committee

Laura is a first year graduate student working in Soils and Biogeochemistry. Her research project is focused on changes in agricultural wheat physiology due to water stress and CO2 increase. Laura has gotten involved in many committees that strive to bolster the graduate experience. She is a representative of the GSA, a member of the Graduate Fee Initiative Committee, and a member of the Mentorship Advisory Committee. She participates on these panels and the CGPSA to actively contribute in the dialogue and decision-making that directly affects graduate student life. She hopes her involvement continues to make UC Davis one of the best and most competitive institutions of higher education in academics and quality of life.

Photo of Melissa Ibarra. Melissa Ibarra, 2014-16

School of Medicine

Melissa Ibarra is a second year master’s student in Public Health, concentrating in environmental epidemiology. She received her bachelor’s in Biological Sciences from Mount Holyoke College in 2012. She has since then worked at Cañada College helping students matriculate to four-year universities, and at the Hopkins Marine Station of Stanford University conducting research. Melissa is especially interested in providing students with the resources necessary to achieve their highest potential. In her spare time, Melissa enjoys spending time outdoors, watching movies and hanging out with family and friends.

Photo of Karl LarsonKarl Larson, 2015-16

Molecular, Cellular, & Integrative Physiology

Karl is a 1st year Ph.D. student in the Molecular, Cellular, & Integrative Physiology graduate group.  His research interests lie in the area of nutrient sensing and the neuroendocrine regulation of feeding behavior.  Karl received a B.S. in Biology from Luther College (Iowa) in 2009 and an M.S. in Integrative Physiology from the University of Colorado in 2012.  Prior to arriving at UC-Davis, he taught high school science at the American School in Japan.  Karl is passionate about education and is excited to take an active role in the UC Davis community.  In his spare time, Karl enjoys exploring the area surrounding Davis on bike and reading.

Photo of Yoonjung Lee. Yoonjung Lee, 2015-16

Political Science

Yoonjung Lee is a sixth year doctoral student in Political Science. She studied International Relations as an undergraduate at Ewha Womans University before she arrived at Davis. Her current research explores the effect that competing political and social identities have on information processing and learning with regards to policy issues. Due to her bicultural background, Yoonjung is very passionate about issues that both international and domestic students face in their daily lives as they are pursuing their education. In her free time, she loves to watch movies and explore various foods with her fiancé, and on special days she likes to go dancing with her friends!

Photo of Angela Monterrubio. Angela Monterrubio, 2015-16

Biochemistry, Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology

Angela Monterrubio is a 6th year graduate student in the Biochemistry, Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology program (BMCDB). Her thesis project involves investigating novel therapies for mitigating and/or reversing neurodegenerative diseases. Angela received a B.S. in Biochemistry at CSU, Sacramento in 2010, and matriculated into the Ph.D program at UC Davis the same year. Angela's main goals as a CGPSA member are to propose and implement changes at UCD that will ease the financial burden experienced by graduate and professional students while obtaining their degrees.

Photo of Gabrielle Names.Gabrielle Names, 2015-16

Animal Behavior Graduate Group
Other campus affiliations: Animal Behavior Graduate Student Association Representative, Academic Senate Committee on International Education member

Gabrielle is a second-year Ph.D. student working in Gabrielle Nevitt’s lab. She studies chemical ecology and behavior in the Leach’s storm-petrel, a small seabird. Gabrielle earned her B.S. in Biology and B.A. in French from the College of William and Mary (Williamsburg, Virginia) in 2012, and her M.S. in Evolutionary Ecology from the Ecole Normale Supérieure (Paris, France) in 2014. In regards to UC Davis campus issues, Gabrielle is especially interested in aligning research with societal needs, increasing campus diversity, and providing more international experiences to students. In her free time, Gabrielle enjoys running, hiking, watching French films, and attending theater performances.

Photo of Marwa Zafarullah.Marwa Zafarullah, 2015-16

Integrative Genetics and Genomics

Marwa Zafarullah is a first year master’s student in Integrative Genetics and Genomics at the University of California, Davis. She is an international student from Pakistan who earned her bachelor’s in Agriculture Sciences from the University of Agriculture Faisalabad in Pakistan and graduated first in her class. After passing a competitive examination, she received a scholarship from the Agriculture Innovation Program of USAID to pursue her master’s at UC Davis and currently she is working in the laboratory of Dr. Luca Comai on research related to the evolution of Centromeric Histone proteins and their conservative role in the survival of Arabidopsis Thaliana. In her spare time, Marwa loves to read books, interact with international students and hang-out with her friends.