People

Sean Collins

Sean Collins

  • Alumni
  • United States
  • 2012 PhD Materials Science
  • Trinity College

In 2012, I completed a dual degree program at the University of Michigan in chemistry and piano performance. While at Michigan, I led research in the preparation of nanostructured semiconductor films for solar energy conversion applications. I have also worked on projects developing new processing methods for semiconductor purification. Since graduating, I have worked at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (USA), conducting research on the role of atmospheric aerosols in climate change. I am currently working on my PhD in Materials Science and Metallurgy at Cambridge with a focus on electron microscopy and spectroscopy. By visualizing materials and their properties at length scales approaching individual atoms my work serves to understand fundamental properties of light-matter interactions. These fundamental relationships underpin advances in a variety of technology areas from chemical and biological sensing to information technology applications. Throughout my career, I hope to lead research aimed at understanding the chemistry and physics of materials in climate science and renewable energy.

Honorary Patrons

In 2012, Bill and Melinda Gates generously agreed to become Honorary Patrons of the Gates Cambridge Trust. The Trust is delighted to reinforce a direct link between the Gates Cambridge Scholarships and the Gates family.

Melinda French Gates

  • Co-chair and Trustee of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Melinda French Gates

Melinda French Gates

  • Co-chair and Trustee of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Melinda Gates is co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Along with co-chair Bill Gates, she shapes and approves foundation strategies, review results, advocate for the foundation's issues, and help set the overall direction of the organization. They meet with local, national, and international grantees and partners to further the foundation's goal of improving equity in the United States and around the world. They also use many public appearances, including speeches, interviews, and articles, to focus attention on these issues.

Bill Gates

  • Co-chair and Trustee of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Bill Gates

Bill Gates

  • Co-chair and Trustee of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Bill Gates is co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Along with co-chair Melinda Gates, he shapes and approves grantmaking strategies, advocates for the foundation’s issues, and helps set the overall direction of the organization. Bill and Melinda Gates work together to expand opportunity to the world’s most disadvantaged people by collaborating with grantees and partners. They also participate in national and international events and travel extensively to focus attention on the issues the foundation champions.

Trustees

The Gates Cambridge Board brings together nine distinguished Trustees from a range of backgrounds. Two Trustees are appointed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the others by the University of Cambridge. Trustees meet twice a year to provide strategic direction for the programme.

Professor Stephen Toope OC LL.D.

  • Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge (Chair)
Professor Stephen Toope OC LL.D.

Professor Stephen Toope OC LL.D.

  • Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge (Chair)

On 2 October 2017 Professor Stephen Toope became the 346th Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge. Professor Toope joined Cambridge after a distinguished career as a scholar and academic leader. He was Director of the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs (2015-2017), and before that President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of British Columbia (2006-2014). He served as President of the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation (2002-2006), and as Dean of Law at McGill University (1994-1999). Born in Montreal, Canada (1958), Stephen Toope studied History and Literature at Harvard University, graduating magna cum laude (1979), before earning degrees in common law and civil law at McGill University (1983). He is an alumnus of Trinity College, Cambridge, where he completed a Ph.D. under the supervision of Sir Derek Bowett (1987). Professor Toope’s academic interests are in international law, human rights, international legal theory and international development. From 1986 to 1987 he served as Law Clerk to the Rt. Hon. Brian Dickson, Chief Justice of Canada. In 1991, he was Research Director at the Office of the Special Representative concerning the Royal Commission on Aboriginal People (1991). Professor Toope subsequently worked as a consultant to Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, the Canadian International Development Agency, and a number of United Nations’ agencies. In 1994 he was a delegate on the UN’s observer mission to the first post-apartheid South African General Election. Between 2004 and 2007 he was Chair and Rapporteur of the UN’s Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances. In 2005 he served as a fact-finder for the Commission of Inquiry into the Actions of Canadian Government Officials in relation to Maher Arar, a Canadian subjected to rendition from the USA to Syria, where he was tortured. He was Chair of the Board of Universities Canada, and President of Canada’s Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences. He is a past Director of the Public Policy Forum, of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, and of the Royal Conservatory of Music – from which he received an Honorary Fellowship. Among the distinctions he has received are the Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Medal (2012), the United Way of Canada President’s Award of Distinction (2014), various honorary degrees, and the John Read Medal of the Canadian Council of International Law (2015). In recognition of his service and accomplishments, in 2015 he was inducted as an Officer of the Order of Canada – one of Canada’s highest honours. Stephen Toope is married to speech therapist and musical theatre composer Paula Rosen. They live in Cambridge and have three adult children.

Timothy Harvey-Samuel

  • Bursar of Trinity Hall, Cambridge (Honorary Treasurer)
Timothy Harvey-Samuel

Timothy Harvey-Samuel

  • Bursar of Trinity Hall, Cambridge (Honorary Treasurer)

Tim Harvey-Samuel graduated in English from Queens' in 1987 and has been Bursar of Trinity Hall since March 2020, prior to which he was Bursar of Corpus Christi College for six years. He also lectures for the Master of Finance programme at the Judge Business School. He spent 26 years in investment banking, mainly at Schroders and Citigroup where he led the Equity Capital Markets business for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Amy K Carter

  • Deputy Director, Family Interest Grants, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Amy K Carter

Amy K Carter

  • Deputy Director, Family Interest Grants, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Amy is the Deputy Director of Family Interest Grants at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle, Washington. In this role Amy manages the personal giving of the Gates family. Amy has worked at the Foundation for nearly 20 years, holding various positions including: Program Officer, Global Health (Family Planning & Reproductive Health), Special Program Officer to CEO Patty Stonesifer, and Program Officer for Special Initiatives, US Program. Prior professional experience includes: the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation (Population Program); Planned Parenthood Federation of America; and the Echoing Green Foundation. Amy received her BA from Mount Holyoke College (with Honors) and a MPH from Columbia University with a focus on Population and Family Health. She lives in Seattle with her husband and two children.

Professor Mary Sue Coleman

  • Former President of the Association of American Universities and former President, University of Michigan.
Professor Mary Sue Coleman

Professor Mary Sue Coleman

  • Former President of the Association of American Universities and former President, University of Michigan.

Mary Sue Coleman has led the University of Michigan since being appointed its 13th president in August 2002. As president, she has unveiled several major initiatives that will have an impact on future generations of students, the intellectual life of the campus, and society at large. These initiatives include the interdisciplinary richness of the U-M, student residential life, the economic vitality of the state and nation, global engagement, and the value of innovation and creativity. Time magazine has named her one of the nation’s “10 best college presidents.” President Coleman is a recognized higher education leader at the national level. President Obama selected her as one of six university presidents to help launch the Advanced Manufacturing Partnership, a national effort bringing together industry, universities and the federal government. And in 2010, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke named her co-chair of the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Under President Coleman’s leadership, the University has launched and expanded academic partnerships with universities in China, Ghana, South Africa and Brazil. She also announced a groundbreaking partnership between the University and Google, which will enable the public to search the text of the University’s 7-million-volume library and will open the way to universal access and the preservation of recorded human knowledge. Dr. Coleman led “The Michigan Difference,” a campaign to raise $2.5 billion for the future of the institution. At its conclusion in December 2008, the campaign finale stood at $3.2 billion – the most ever raised by a public university. She is regarded as a national spokesperson on the educational value of diverse perspectives in the classroom. Her extensive leadership positions in higher education have included membership on the National Collegiate Athletic Association Board of Directors and the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics. She is the immediate past chair of the Association of American Universities.

Dr Mimi Gates

  • Former Director of the Seattle Art Museum and Yale University Art Gallery
Dr Mimi Gates

Dr Mimi Gates

  • Former Director of the Seattle Art Museum and Yale University Art Gallery

Mimi Gardner Gates was director of the Seattle Art Museum for fifteen years and is now director emerita, overseeing the Gardner Center for Asian Art and Ideas. Previously, she spent nineteen years at Yale University Art Gallery, the last seven-and-a-half of those years as director. She is a fellow of the Yale Corporation; Chairman of the Dunhuang Foundation; Chairman of the Blakemore Foundation; a trustee of the San Francisco Asian Art Museum; a trustee of the H. John Heinz III Center for Science, Economics and the Environment, and serves on the boards of the Yale University Art Gallery, the Northwest African American Museum, the Terra Foundation and Copper Canyon Press. Dr. Gates formerly chaired the National Indemnity Program at the National Endowment for the Arts and served on the Getty Leadership Institute Advisory Committee.

Dr Julia Li

  • Co-Founder & CEO, Micrographia Bio; Gates Cambridge Alumna
Dr Julia Li

Dr Julia Li

  • Co-Founder & CEO, Micrographia Bio; Gates Cambridge Alumna

Julia completed a PhD Engineering in 2012, which focused on innovative financing solutions for global health. Stemming from her PhD research at Gates Cambridge, she originated, raised and deployed the world's first $108mm Global Health Investment Fund with Lion's Head Global Partners and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The purpose of the fund was to provide financing to advance the development of drugs, vaccines, diagnostics and other interventions against diseases that disproportionately burden low-income countries. Before coming to Cambridge, Julia qualified as a Chartered Accountant with KPMG's Canadian biotechnology practice and undertook projects for a variety of organisations including GAVI and WHO. During her time in Cambridge, Julia co-founded the African Innovation Prize, served on the University Council, and initiated and convened the Cambridge Global Health Commercialization and Funding Roundtable.

Julia is currently based in London's White City biomedical campus as Co-Founder & CEO of Micrographia Bio, a deeptech bio company focused on applying machine learning to bioimaging to accelerate drug discovery.

Professor Usha Goswami CBE FRS FBA

  • Professor of Cognitive Developmental Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of St John’s College, Cambridge. Founding Director of the Centre for Neuroscience in Education.
Professor Usha Goswami CBE FRS FBA

Professor Usha Goswami CBE FRS FBA

  • Professor of Cognitive Developmental Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of St John’s College, Cambridge. Founding Director of the Centre for Neuroscience in Education.

Usha Goswami CBE FRS FBA is Professor of Cognitive Developmental Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of St John’s College, Cambridge. She is also founding Director of the Centre for Neuroscience in Education. After training as a primary school teacher, Usha decided to pursue research in child psychology, focusing on reading development and dyslexia. Most recently, she has been studying the neural mechanisms underpinning language encoding. Her research goal is to understand the brain basis of dyslexia and speech and language difficulties, to improve children’s experience of both diagnosis and remediation. She has received a number of awards for her research, including the British Psychology Society’s Spearman Medal and President’s Award and the Norman Geschwind-Rodin Prize for Dyslexia research, Sweden. Her work in developing the new discipline of neuroscience in education was recognised in 2019 by the Yidan Prize for Education Research, the largest international education research prize globally.

Dame Sally Davies GCB, DBE, FRS, FMedSci

  • Master of Trinity College, Cambridge, UK Special Envoy on Antimicrobial Resistance and former Chief Medical Officer for England
Dame Sally Davies  GCB, DBE, FRS, FMedSci

Dame Sally Davies GCB, DBE, FRS, FMedSci

  • Master of Trinity College, Cambridge, UK Special Envoy on Antimicrobial Resistance and former Chief Medical Officer for England

Dame Sally Davies was installed as the 40th Master of Trinity College on 8 October 2019. She joined the College after a distinguished career as a clinical academic and public servant. Dame Sally graduated from Manchester Medical School in 1972 and became a Consultant Haematologist specialising in sickle cell disease. In 1997 she was appointed as Honorary Professor of Haemoglobinopathies at Imperial College. Dame Sally was the Chief Scientific Adviser to the Department of Health from 2004-2016. In 2006 she founded the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) and was the Inaugural Director. In 2013 she established and became a Non-Executive Director of Genomics England Ltd (GEL) which sequenced 100,000 whole genomes of NHS patients. Dame Sally was the Chief Medical Officer for England and Senior Medical Advisor to the UK Government from 2011-2019. She authorised 11 independent annual reports and 3 special reports: Medical Cannabis, Screen Times for Children and Obesity in Childhood. She has become a leading figure in global health including serving as a member of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Executive Board 2014-2016 and as co-convener of the United Nations Inter-Agency Co-ordination Group (IACG) on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) reporting in 2019. She has championed the need to address AMR across all sections: human and animal health, agriculture and environment within the UN family and globally. In 2019 Dame Sally was appointed as the UK Government’s Special Envoy for Global AMR. Dame Sally received her DBE in 2009. She was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 2014 and a member of the National Academy of Medicine, USA in 2015. She has been awarded more than 30 honorary doctorate degrees.

Professor Bhaskar Vira

  • Professor of Political Economy and Head of Department, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge; Fellow and Graduate Tutor at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge.
Professor Bhaskar Vira

Professor Bhaskar Vira

  • Professor of Political Economy and Head of Department, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge; Fellow and Graduate Tutor at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge.

Bhaskar Vira is Professor of Political Economy, and Head of Department, at the Department of Geography, University of Cambridge. He is a Fellow and Graduate Tutor at Fitzwilliam College. He is also the Founding Director of the University of Cambridge Conservation Research Institute and a Trustee of Fauna & Flora International. Professor Vira’s research focuses on the changing political economy of environment and development, especially in South Asia. He is trained as an economist, but now engages across the critical social sciences and their interface with the biological and environmental natural sciences. He is committed to public engagement and has contributed to science-policy dialogues and impact-related research in India as well as globally. In 2018, he was honoured with the Royal Geographical Society’s Busk Medal, in recognition of his contributions to interdisciplinary research on environment and development. Professor Vira lives in Cambridge with his wife Shiraz (Trinity, 1988) and his two children and dog.

Staff

A small team, headed by the Provost, is responsible for managing the Gates Cambridge Scholarships programme.

Professor Barry Everitt FRS FMedSci ScD

  • Provost
  • Professor of Behavioural Neuroscience, University of Cambridge; former Master of Downing College, Cambridge
Professor Barry Everitt FRS FMedSci ScD

Professor Barry Everitt FRS FMedSci ScD

  • Provost
  • Professor of Behavioural Neuroscience, University of Cambridge; former Master of Downing College, Cambridge

Barry Everitt graduated from the University of Hull with a B.Sc. in Zoology in 1967. He gained his Ph.D. in behavioural neuroendocrinology from the University of Birmingham in 1970. Following postdoctoral neuroscience research as a Medical Research Council Fellow at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, he joined the Department of Anatomy in the University of Cambridge as a lecturer in 1974 and was appointed Reader in Neuroscience in 1991. He moved to the Department of Experimental Psychology (now Psychology) in Cambridge in 1994 and was appointed Professor of Behavioural Neuroscience in 1997. He was the Master of Downing College from 2003-2013, having been a Fellow since 1976 and was appointed Provost of the Gates Cambridge Trust in 2013. Professor Everitt is a Fellow of the Royal Society (2007), a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences (2008) and a Member of EMBO (2014). He has received honorary D.Sc. degrees from both his almae matres (Hull University in 2009; Birmingham University in 2010) and an honorary MD from the Karolinska Instituet. Among many awards, he was the recipient of the American Psychological Association’s Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award (2011), the European Behavioural Pharmacological Society Distinguished Achievement Award (2011), the British Association for Psychopharmacology Lifetime Achievement Award (2012) and the Fondation Ipsen Neuonal Plasticity Prize (2014). He has been the President of the British Association for Psychopharmacology (1992-4), the European Brain and Behaviour Society (1998-2000) and the European Behavioural Pharmacology Society (2003-5) and will be President of the Federation of European Neuroscience Societies 2016-2018. He was a member of the MRC Neurosciences and Mental Health Board (1999-2003) and a Scientific Counsellor for the National Institute on Drug Abuse (Washington DC, 2002-6). He is currently a member of the Independent Scientific Committee on Drugs (Brain Science), an independent think-tank on drugs of abuse. He was Editor-in-Chief of the European Journal of Neuroscience from1997-2008 and has been a Reviewing Editor for the journal Science since 2005. His research is concerned with understanding the neural mechanisms of motivation, reward, learning and memory, especially in the context of drug addiction. He has published over 400 scientific papers and is one of the world’s 50 most highly cited neuroscience researchers, with an h-Index of 105.

Dr Jade Tran

  • Director of Finance
Dr Jade Tran

Dr Jade Tran

  • Director of Finance

Jade is the Director of Finance at Gates Cambridge. She is responsible for the Trust’s financial and investment functions and is part of the Trust’s senior management team. Prior to joining the Trust, she served as Finance Manager for Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, having previously been Finance Business Partner at the British Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council. Jade is a chartered accountant and holds a PhD in Biological Sciences from the University of Cambridge.

Jim Smith

  • Programme Director
  • Senior Member of Wolfson College, Cambridge; Trustee, Jimmy's Cambridge
Jim Smith

Jim Smith

  • Programme Director
  • Senior Member of Wolfson College, Cambridge; Trustee, Jimmy's Cambridge

Born in Cambridge, Jim was educated at Parkside School and Hills Road Sixth Form College; he gained a First Class Honours degree in Politics from the University of Newcastle in 1999. Upon graduation he took up a position at what is now the Cambridge Commonwealth, European & International Trust working with a range of NGOs, governments, multinational companies and individuals to fund outstanding international students at Cambridge. In 2002 he was awarded a prestigious Commonwealth Scholarship for postgraduate study in Australia, but instead took up the opportunity to become a professional musician. Jim was appointed Executive Officer of the Gates Cambridge Trust in 2005 and then it’s Programme Director in 2013 - a role which forms part of the senior management of the Trust. As Programme Director, Jim works closely with the Provost and Director of Finance and manages the Programme team. He is also an interviewer on the Social Sciences interview panel to select Gates Cambridge Scholars. Jim is privileged to be a Senior Member of Wolfson College, Cambridge and a Trustee and Company Director of homeless charity Jimmy's Cambridge. Jim is still active musically and is involved in numerous projects and hosts regular live music nights in Cambridge.

Dr Regina Sachers

Dr Regina Sachers

  • Secretary

Head of Governance and Compliance Division, University of Cambridge

Luisa Clarke

  • Programme Manager
Luisa Clarke

Luisa Clarke

  • Programme Manager

Luisa joined Gates Cambridge in October 2015, having previously worked at Cambridge Judge Business School. She brings considerable student recruitment and admissions experience to the team. A graduate of Cardiff University, where she read European Studies, in her spare time Luisa enjoys reading, travel and is currently training for her first 10km run. She looks forward to working with the diverse Gates Cambridge community.

Dr Carlos Podadera

  • Programme Officer
Dr Carlos Podadera

Dr Carlos Podadera

  • Programme Officer

Carlos joined Gates Cambridge in February 2019 after a nine year stint at the International Programmes Department of Pembroke College, Cambridge University, where he was the Senior Coordinator of the Pembroke-King’s Programme and the Tutor of a group of Spring Semester Programme students. In parallel to that he obtained his PhD on Gothic narrative conventions and Spanish literature of the fin de siècle in Anglia Ruskin University in 2018. In his spare time he enjoys reading crime fiction and he is a big fan of Ian Rankin’s John Rebus novels.

Ms Celine Ophelders

  • Alumni & Events Officer
Ms Celine Ophelders

Ms Celine Ophelders

  • Alumni & Events Officer

Usha Virdee

  • Accounts Officer
Usha Virdee

Usha Virdee

  • Accounts Officer

Usha Virdee joined the Gates Cambridge Trust in March 2009 and holds the position of Accounts Officer. Previously she worked as an Accounts Administrator for Magdalene College. Usha studied Pharmacology at university. She enjoys travelling and visiting many different countries.

Mandy Garner

  • Communications Officer
Mandy Garner

Mandy Garner

  • Communications Officer

As well as working as Gates Cambridge's Communuciations Officer one and half days a week, Mandy works on the Festival of Ideas and the Cambridge Series at the Hay Festival, organising debates and publicising events. Mandy’s background is in education and health journalism. She was features editor of the Times Higher Education Supplement and also worked for the BBC as a senior broadcast journalist as well as for the writers' association International PEN as a researcher on freedom of expression issues.

Scholars' Council

The Scholars’ Council is funded by the Trust and supports the aims of the Gates Cambridge Scholarship to create a network of responsible global leaders. Drawing on the experiences and aspirations of the entire Gates Cambridge Community, the Council strives to enrich the academic, social and professional lives of all Scholars.

Ms Ariel de Fauconberg

  • The President/Chair of the Scholars' Council oversees its activities and liaises with the Trust on behalf of Scholars. Contact the President at president@gatescouncil.org
Ms Ariel de Fauconberg

Ms Ariel de Fauconberg

  • The President/Chair of the Scholars' Council oversees its activities and liaises with the Trust on behalf of Scholars. Contact the President at president@gatescouncil.org

My interest in untangling the 'grand challenge' of climate change mitigation was sparked as a National Geographic documentary intern in 2007. Since then, my education and professional work has delved into understanding the complexities of this issue from a Management perspective. After earning an MPhil in Geography & the Environment at the University of Oxford, I worked as a Research Fellow at Babson College, conducting studies on clean energy entrepreneurship and female-led, high growth, high-potential firms. I intend to research climate change mitigation and transition strategies for my PhD. More specifically, I am interested in challenges that large organizations -- particularly those in the oil and gas industry -- face while pursuing alternative energy-related innovations. Given the potential severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts of many climate change-related phenomena on Earth systems, research in this area is necessary to produce theories and evidence on which we can base organizational decisions and public policies for the long-term well-being of global society. I am excited and honoured to be joining the Gates Cambridge community this year.

Previous Education

University of Cambridge Innovation, Strategy, and Orga 2020
Bentley College Business Administration 2016
University of Oxford Geography and the Environment 2014

Ms Anwesha Lahiri

  • The Vice President/Secretary works with the President to coordinate Council activities and to liaise with the Trust. Contact vice-president@gatescouncil.org
Ms Anwesha Lahiri

Ms Anwesha Lahiri

  • The Vice President/Secretary works with the President to coordinate Council activities and to liaise with the Trust. Contact vice-president@gatescouncil.org

Born in a family of doctors in India, I grew up looking at the world through a lens of seasoned physicians battling to save lives in resource-poor settings. While the academic in me developed an insatiable curiosity about the biological mechanisms of diseases, the social activist in me realized that exploring drivers of diseases at a population level is important to solve global health problems. My graduate studies at IIT Bombay and University of Cambridge cemented this understanding; extensive field research and work experience with UNICEF impressed upon me the importance of translating research findings into actionable evidence. My PhD seeks to explore the nutritional, lifestyle and metabolic risk factors of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases in South Asians; integrating clinical knowledge, statistics and public health. South Asians, constituting a fourth of the global population, experience a disproportionately high burden of these diseases, aggravated by inequities in biological risk, behavioural factors and access to health services. Through my research I wish to comprehensively examine the importance of modifiable risk factors in mitigating cardiometabolic disease risks in this population and inform country-specific policies and disease prevention strategies.

Previous Education

University of Cambridge Epidemiology 2021
Indian Institute of Technology - Bombay Technology and Development 2019
West Bengal University of Technology Biotechnology 2017

Mr Brandon Mercado-Saavedra

  • Contact the Treasurer at treasurer@gatescouncil.org
Mr Brandon Mercado-Saavedra

Mr Brandon Mercado-Saavedra

  • Contact the Treasurer at treasurer@gatescouncil.org

I grew up in Santa Cruz, Bolivia and went to Universidad Autonoma Gabriel Rene Moreno where I received a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry. During my time as an undergrad student, I developed an interest in improving the health system of my country by performing research in those diseases that mostly affect Bolivia. The following year, I became part of a training program in charge of Professor Robert H. Gilman from the Johns Hopkins University, who gave me the opportunity of doing a master degree in Epidemiological research at the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia where I studied the development of the most important chronic manifestation of Chagas disease (cardiomyopathy). During my training, I also completed courses in Argentina, Chile, Peru and the United States, which later allowed me to present my work at the Annual Meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH). I was also awarded a fellowship in research at the Johns Hopkins University. At Cambridge, I will perform a PhD in Biochemistry studying the interaction of Toxoplasma gondii with the host cell under the supervision of Professor Ross Waller. Besides my academic work, I am interested in youth development for which I have been selected as a Bolivian Youth Ambassador, a program sponsored by the Department of State of the United States

Previous Education

Universidad Peruana Cayetano H Epidemiology and Research 2019
Universidad A Gabriel Rene M. Biochemistry 2017

Ms Mine Koprulu

  • Internal Officer
  • The Internal Officer organises Internal Symposia each term and the Annual Gates Weekend of Research
Ms Mine Koprulu

Ms Mine Koprulu

  • Internal Officer
  • The Internal Officer organises Internal Symposia each term and the Annual Gates Weekend of Research

I am a young geneticist who is ambitious about improving healthcare and stratified medicine. At the age of 16, I attended to United World Colleges of Atlantic, an institute with a mission to use education as a force to unite people, nations and cultures for world peace and sustainable future. While at UWC, academically I became interested in studying disease genetics due to its potential to improve the lives of others. Thus, I studied BSc Human Genetics at UCL, where I developed an interest on the genetic basis of complex diseases. Afterwards, I studied MPhil in Genomic Medicine at Cambridge University as a Gates Scholar. During my master's, I worked at Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute under Prof Zeggini's supervision on two complex disease bioinformatics projects where I worked with large datasets including UKBioBank. For my PhD, I will be studying the rare and low-frequency variants underlying diabetes using data from several biological levels under the supervision of Dr Langenberg. I am very intrigued about this project addressing the knowledge gap in complex disease genomics, given its potential to improve healthcare and stratified medicine. I am very excited to be a part of the influential Gates Cambridge community again.

Previous Education

University of Cambridge Genomic Medicine 2018
University College London Human Genetics 2017

Mr Michael Salka

  • External Community Officer
  • The External Community Officer promotes scholar involvement in the community. Contact the Officer at external@gatescouncil.org
Mr Michael Salka

Mr Michael Salka

  • External Community Officer
  • The External Community Officer promotes scholar involvement in the community. Contact the Officer at external@gatescouncil.org

My hands were rarely clean; as a child in the remote southwest of Colorado, I grew up shaping and being shaped by nature. A youth spent making a place for myself in that vast wilderness by building humble forts of pine, mud and snow endowed me with a reverence for the fundamental interconnectedness of ecology. Eventually, my awe found purpose in a career devoted to addressing the unprecedented challenges of a globalized, majority-urban, and climatically unstable world using the equally unprecedented potential of big data and digital technologies. Undergraduate management of teams of Engineers Without Borders in Rwanda, professional experience contributing to the USA’s largest net-zero energy neighborhood, and extended working travel throughout Europe guided me to enroll in the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia’s premier Master in Advanced Ecological Buildings & Biocities. This uniquely immersive program is hosted at Valldaura Labs, a progressively holistic research and fabrication facility just 10km from Barcelona’s center yet surrounded by forest. Upon graduation in 2019, I assumed a leadership role at Valldaura, where I pursued the investigations of regionally attuned, circular value-chains and nature-based solutions for development I’ll further in my PhD studies through the application of geographic information systems. I'm humbled to have been offered this privileged opportunity by the Gates Cambridge Trust and the University of Cambridge as well as to be counted among such an accomplished cohort, and extend my profound gratitude to all who have empowered my achievements to date.

Previous Education

Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia Advanced Ecological Buildings 2019
University of Colorado at Boulder Env. Design: Architecture 2014

Links

https://valldaura.net
https://www.instagram.com/mnmnsalka
https://www.linkedin.com/in/michaelsalka

Miss Mahlaqua Noor

  • Alumni Officer
  • The Alumni Officer works closely with the Gates Cambridge Alumni Association to connect the Scholar and Alumni communities.
Miss Mahlaqua Noor

Miss Mahlaqua Noor

  • Alumni Officer
  • The Alumni Officer works closely with the Gates Cambridge Alumni Association to connect the Scholar and Alumni communities.

I have always been fascinated by tiny creatures such as viruses that are capable of launching vicious attacks on our robust immune system. I want to gain a deeper understanding of how viruses engage with its host (us) and the arsenals we deploy to strike back. I did my undergraduate degree in Biochemistry and Cell Biology at Jacobs University in Germany. Early exposure to research and extensive mentoring from my professors motivated me to pursue both on-campus and international research opportunities. I designed polyelectrolyte microcapsules for T-cell staining at Jacobs University and studied the cytokine-mediated death of intestinal organoids to understand the pathogenesis of Crohn’s disease at NYU. For my thesis, I investigated the role of cathepsin K in the choroid plexus of mice brains. I also worked at a start-up company in Frankfurt conducting cognitive and neuroscience research. Simultaneously, I have explored my passions for science writing, education and health access, and community service. I served as an Assistant Editor in ‘The Journal of Young Investigators’ where I reviewed scientific manuscripts submitted by undergraduate researchers. I also served as the President of ‘Explore Bremen’, a student-initiated outreach club that mentors socio-economic disadvantaged and refugee kids. I am actively involved in science communication through blogging and graphic designing to help science reach a wider audience. At Cambridge, I am working in the lab of Dr. Mark Wills to investigate the modulation of Natural Killer (NK) cell responses by HCMV. Since HCMV infection can be fatal in immunocompromised patients, therapeutically targeting the viral reservoir via NK cells could have far-reaching clinical implications. I am incredibly honored and excited to be a part of the passionate and dynamic Gates Cambridge community.

Previous Education

Jacobs University Biochemistry and Cell Biology 2019

Ms Tanvi Rao

  • Social Officer
  • The Social Officers plan a variety of events in Cambridge and trips further afield throughout the year. Contact the Social Officers at social@gatescouncil.org
Ms Tanvi Rao

Ms Tanvi Rao

  • Social Officer
  • The Social Officers plan a variety of events in Cambridge and trips further afield throughout the year. Contact the Social Officers at social@gatescouncil.org

As an undergraduate studying Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech, I became fascinated with medical imaging during internships and research focused on minimally invasive device design for radiology procedures. In my post-graduate work as a consultant, I sought to create impact through healthcare innovation but realized that subconscious bias in tactical solution design often excludes patients with the greatest need. We witnessed this during the COVID-19 crisis as those unable to access or afford care suffered disproportionately.While innovation is key to society’s well-being and progress, I believe we are also obligated to ensure that it reaches those who need it most. Through my PhD research in radiogenomics, an emerging field that combines medical imaging with genomic data, I seek to develop imaging biomarkers and predictive models for liver cancer. Ultimately, this research aims to improve access to care and reduce the resource burden on health professionals by creating tools that enhance diagnostics, enable remote assessment, and improve precision care for an under-funded yet deadly cancer. My research is supervised by Dr. Evis Sala in the Radiogenomics and Quantitative Imaging Group within the Department of Radiology.

Previous Education

Georgia Institute of Technology Biomedical Engineering 2018

Mr Colin Lee

  • Social Officer
  • The Social Officers plan a variety of events in Cambridge and trips further afield throughout the year. Contact the Social Officers at social@gatescouncil.org
Mr Colin Lee

Mr Colin Lee

  • Social Officer
  • The Social Officers plan a variety of events in Cambridge and trips further afield throughout the year. Contact the Social Officers at social@gatescouncil.org

Most have a favourite colour, I have a favourite cell. Macrophages are tissue-resident immune cells that are the ‘first ones in and last ones out’ in most tissue insults. This crush started in 2018, while investigating a rare immune disorder where chronic EBV infection drove uncontrolled macrophage activation, corrupting our biggest ally into a fatal enemy. I went on to study these cells in other contexts, including pregnancy, where placental macrophages have a plethora of roles essential for fetal health. By the midpoint of my medical studies at Cambridge University, I was committed to dedicating more time to immunology research, which has the potential to transform all fields of medicine. For my PhD, I bring my interests in tissue-resident immunity to triple negative breast cancer (TNBC). TNBC is the most aggressive form of breast cancer and the lack of effective therapies in TNBC is a major unmet clinical need. By combining computational methods with functional disease models, I hope to derive translatable insights to antibody and macrophage-directed responses within tumours, which may yield novel therapeutic strategies in TNBC. Outside of the lab, I am passionate about sports, education outreach and medical education.

Previous Education

University of Cambridge Medicine 2020

Olin Moctezuma-Burns

  • Communications Officer
  • The Communications Officer is the conduit for assembling and distributing information to and about the Scholar community
Olin Moctezuma-Burns

Olin Moctezuma-Burns

  • Communications Officer
  • The Communications Officer is the conduit for assembling and distributing information to and about the Scholar community

I am passionate about archival research and aspire to a career as a historian of science who closely examines local contexts and everyday practices, paying special attention to understudied voices. My doctoral research explores how knowledge about plants was consolidated in seventeenth-century English homes through list-keeping. From the kitchen hearth, extending out to gardens and global networks of exchange, lists were used to amass, process, and communicate information about plants. I trace the impact of this simple technology within and beyond the home and will contribute to an understanding of how technology can shift our relationship with nature. These interests emerged while I was studying an English BA in the UNAM and were consolidated during my Early Modern Studies MA at UCL. Nevertheless, the seeds were planted when I was growing up in rural Mexico. Having witnessed educational inequality, I am committed to addressing this issue by exploring the role of archives and digital technologies in bridging disparity, in allowing marginalised communities to reclaim repositories, and in nourishing and disseminating alternative modes of knowledge production.

Previous Education

University College London Early Modern Studies 2019
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico English Language and lit. 2017

Mr Stanley Onyemechalu

  • Gates Community Officer
  • The Gates Community Officers are responsible for fostering an inclusive Gates Community. Contact the Gates Community Officer at community@gatescouncil.org
Mr Stanley Onyemechalu

Mr Stanley Onyemechalu

  • Gates Community Officer
  • The Gates Community Officers are responsible for fostering an inclusive Gates Community. Contact the Gates Community Officer at community@gatescouncil.org

Growing up in south-eastern Nigeria, a recurring phrase among elderly Igbo people in the region is, “before the War…”, followed by narratives of how things used to be and how things could have been. This piqued my interest in cultural heritage and how they are impacted by tragedies and conflicts. During my B.A. at the University of Nigeria, I studied how prolonged interregnal periods in certain Igbo communities, occasioned by succession difficulties after the death of a king, could impact cultural continuity. Now, I will be exploring the destructive and generative impacts of Nigeria’s 30-month Civil war, remembered as the “Biafran War”, on the cultural identity and patrimony of the Igbo people. At Cambridge, my PhD research will focus more explicitly on the complex interaction of conflict and intangible heritage and the dissonances in memorialisation, canonisation, representation and silencing. I hope to further our understanding of the uses of heritage during conflicts and to help post-conflict communities to develop comprehensive approaches to their heritage in order to inform policies for dealing with the legacies of difficult pasts. I am thrilled to belong to the Gates community and I look forward to an impactful partnership.

Previous Education

University of Nigeria Cultural Resources Management 2020
University of Nigeria Archaeology and Tourism 2016

Miss Bailey Weatherbee

  • Outreach Officer
  • The Outreach Officer facilitates the scholar community's engagement with alumni, the wider Cambridge network, the public, and potential new applicants. Contact the Outreach Officer at outreach@gatescouncil.org
Miss Bailey Weatherbee

Miss Bailey Weatherbee

  • Outreach Officer
  • The Outreach Officer facilitates the scholar community's engagement with alumni, the wider Cambridge network, the public, and potential new applicants. Contact the Outreach Officer at outreach@gatescouncil.org

Since childhood, I was always fascinated by developmental biology. I wanted to understand how a single cell could become a complex organism. After matriculating as an Honors Biology student at the University of Delaware, I joined Dr. Salil A. Lachke’s developmental genetics laboratory where I studied the role of RNA-binding protein-mediated post-transcriptional regulation in mammalian ocular lens development. Simultaneously, I explored my passions for education access and science advocacy. Since 2014, I’ve worked with Leading Youth Through Empowerment – a non-profit that offers accelerated coursework to high-achieving at-risk youth. I also participated in the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology’s Advocacy Training Program through which I met with the offices of my senators and representative to advocate for science funding and education.At Cambridge, I will carry out my Ph.D. project in the laboratory of Dr. Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz studying the post-implantation development of human and mouse embryos. Post-implantation stages are referred to as the “black box” of development, and very little is known about these early stages when many pregnancies fail. Recently, Dr. Zernicka-Goetz’s group developed a culture system that opened this “black box” and I look forward to finding what lies within it. I am honored to join the motivated and interdisciplinary Gates Cambridge community.

Previous Education

University of Delaware Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences 2019

Ms Ola Osman

  • Gates Community Officer
  • The Gates Community Officers are responsible for fostering an inclusive Gates Community. Contact the Gates Community Officer at community@gatescouncil.org
Ms Ola Osman

Ms Ola Osman

  • Gates Community Officer
  • The Gates Community Officers are responsible for fostering an inclusive Gates Community. Contact the Gates Community Officer at community@gatescouncil.org

I am a Sudanese-Canadian student, I grew up in London, Ontario and received my bachelor’s degree from the University of Western Ontario’s Department of Women’s Studies and Feminist Research. I completed an MSt in Women’s Studies at the University of Oxford as a Clarendon and Prince Sultan Scholarships holder. During my PhD, in Multi-Disciplinary Gender Studies, I aim to map the continuities between racial slavery, its attendant gendered logics and the Liberian civil war. As a Black feminist scholar, I write to fill the archival abyss that has obliterated Black women’s stories of suffering and resistance in a world where our personal lives are urgently political.

Previous Education

Oxford University MSt Women's Studies 2019
University of Western Ontario Honours Spec. in Women's Stud. 2018

Mr Juan Rueda Silva

  • Technology Officer
  • The Technology Officers are responsible for maintaining the electronic hardware and software in the Scholars' Common Room.
Mr Juan Rueda Silva

Mr Juan Rueda Silva

  • Technology Officer
  • The Technology Officers are responsible for maintaining the electronic hardware and software in the Scholars' Common Room.

I became passionate about biological systems and epigenetic regulation while I was studying my B.Sc. in Biotechnology Engineering at Instituto Tecnologico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey – Campus Estado de Mexico, but also intricated with the complexities of these systems. I am convinced that they hold the key for treating diseases with clinical unmet needs, as such during my undergraduate program I conducted research related with RNA biology and gene silencing. During my PhD in genetics at Cambridge I will work on conducting research on RNA epigenetics and posttranscriptional gene regulation, as I strongly believe that these areas of research will allow us to gain a better understanding of the functioning of biological systems and to search for potential treatments for diseases, such as Cancer. I am very proud and excited to be a part of the Gates Cambridge Community, a community of scholars who believe in the power of knowledge for transforming societies.

Previous Education

Inst Tecnológico de Monterrey Estado de Mexico Biotechnology Engineering 2020

Mr Phillip Kieval

  • Learning for Purpose Co-Director
  • Learning for purpose officers lead and organise a curriculum and series of workshops aimed at skills development for scholars. Contact at learningforpurpose@gatescouncil.org
Mr Phillip Kieval

Mr Phillip Kieval

  • Learning for Purpose Co-Director
  • Learning for purpose officers lead and organise a curriculum and series of workshops aimed at skills development for scholars. Contact at learningforpurpose@gatescouncil.org

My work focuses on the structure and content of representations in deep neural networks. State-of-the-art machine learning systems are ubiquitous in modern life. Deep neural networks exhibit a remarkable level of predictive success worthy of the popular label of artificial intelligence (AI). These systems find applications in everything from algorithmic decision assistance in medicine and criminal justice to playing board games like chess and Go. Our epistemic networks are increasingly intertwined with machine learning algorithms, and scientists rely on them in computational models. However, deep learning systems are opaque in ways that make explaining their capacities intractable. Philosophers of science are uniquely positioned to investigate critical questions concerning the widespread implementation of AI systems. How can deep neural networks teach us about the brain? How do these models generate explanations in science? To what extent does science demand transparency in AI? How should rapid technological advancements in AI inform public policy? How can we promote more humane and egalitarian implementations of AI in public life? Understanding how AI exploits abstract representations can shed light on these important questions.

Previous Education

University of Houston Philosophy 2021
University of Houston Philosophy 2019

Ms Zsuzsanna Ihar

  • Learning for Purpose Co-Director
  • Learning for purpose officers lead and organise a curriculum and series of workshops aimed at skills development for scholars. Contact at learningforpurpose@gatescouncil.org
Ms Zsuzsanna Ihar

Ms Zsuzsanna Ihar

  • Learning for Purpose Co-Director
  • Learning for purpose officers lead and organise a curriculum and series of workshops aimed at skills development for scholars. Contact at learningforpurpose@gatescouncil.org

Growing up on one of the most fertile river islands in Europe, surrounded by industrial-scale farms and greenhouses, I had the chance to witness the workings of the commercial agro-food sector firsthand. It seems everyone around me was incorporated within the agricultural apparatus in some shape or form. Childhood friends grew imported seedlings in high-tech hothouses; cousins gained employment as seasonal labourers; whilst older relatives regaled stories of unified agricultural cooperatives and lamented the loss of collective farms. Hearing these stories, it soon became apparent that any account of agricultural history or theory entailed noticing material relations and affective encounters - drawing humans, machinery, crops, chemicals, and animal beings into a complex fold. This observation led me to study both plant pathology and immunology in tandem with sociology and cultural studies, granting an intimate view into scientific knowledge production. During my PhD, I hope to examine the biopolitics of historical and contemporary seed banking initiatives, with special emphasis on patent laws and ownership structures surrounding wild landrace varieties. Additionally, I am also interested in anti-capitalist, non-institutional, and insurgent forms of agroscience. I am grateful to be a part of the Gates program and its interdisciplinary community of scholars.

Previous Education

University of Sydney Environmental Sociology 2020
University of Sydney Sociology, Cultural Studies 2017
University of Sydney Faculty Scholars Program 2017

Links

https://www.linkedin.com/in/zsuzsannaihar

Ms Julia Jakob

  • Orientation co-director
  • The Orientation officers lead and organise the new Scholar orientation activities. Contact the Orientation Committee at orientation@gatescouncil.org
Ms Julia Jakob

Ms Julia Jakob

  • Orientation co-director
  • The Orientation officers lead and organise the new Scholar orientation activities. Contact the Orientation Committee at orientation@gatescouncil.org

I grew up in Austria, where the formal educational attainment of an individual strongly depends on their parents' education and profession. Education at all levels is not as accessible as it could and should be, and this is most harmful to the most marginalized members of our society. As a German as a second language teacher working with refugees, I have come to understand that accessibility barriers can take many forms, and that what are seemingly traits of individual learners (such as motivation) should be re-examined and understood as systemic accessibility issues.My PhD project will combine gender studies with educational research and social work practice to better understand male refugees' conceptualizations of their plural identities and their language learning motivation. I hope that my findings will contribute to making second language education more accessible and inclusive, and I am honored to be able to carry out this research as a member of the Gates Cambridge community.

Miss Stuti Pachisia

  • Orientation Co-Director
  • • The Orientation officers lead and organise the new Scholar orientation activities. Contact the Orientation Committee at orientation@gatescouncil.org
Miss Stuti Pachisia

Miss Stuti Pachisia

  • Orientation Co-Director
  • • The Orientation officers lead and organise the new Scholar orientation activities. Contact the Orientation Committee at orientation@gatescouncil.org

I grew up in Kolkata, India and studied for a BA in English at Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University. Later, I pursued an MA in Comparative Literature at SOAS, University of London. As a student of literature, I grew deeply interested in the subversive potential and the community value of protest poetry. Through my PhD in English at Cambridge, I seek to explore the literary and cultural movements of the protest poem in the postcolonial metropolis. I find this examination increasingly relevant in light of recent worldwide resistance networks, which express international solidarity through the literary text. Through this project, I hope to not only find interventional ways of thinking about the protest poem, but also to find methodologies for making the literature classroom a socially transformative space.(she/her)

Previous Education

School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) MA in Comparative Literature (Africa/Asia) 2019
Lady Shri Ram College for Women BA in English 2018

Ms Charikleia Triantafyllidou

  • Editor-in-Chief of The Scholar magazine
  • The Editor-in-Chief is responsible for the production of the annual The Scholar magazine. Email: eic@gatescouncil.org
Ms Charikleia Triantafyllidou

Ms Charikleia Triantafyllidou

  • Editor-in-Chief of The Scholar magazine
  • The Editor-in-Chief is responsible for the production of the annual The Scholar magazine. Email: eic@gatescouncil.org

The goal of my PhD research is to explore prosody (stress, rhythm, intonation) and socioeconomic status as factors influencing the development of reading abilities, and I am particularly interested in silent reading (implicit prosody). During my undergraduate studies in English Language and Literature at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, I was exposed to aspects of first and second language acquisition, and as an Erasmus+ student at the University of Edinburgh, I became increasingly interested in language processing and psycholinguistics. During my MPhil in Applied Linguistics at Trinity College Dublin, I focused on dyslexia, prosodic processing, and Computer-Assisted Language Learning. By investigating reading abilities among typically developing readers, my aim is to shed light on the role of prosodic processing and production in reading comprehension, to unveil the impact of hidden socioeconomic inequalities on literacy acquisition, and to investigate the extent to which reading difficulties remain undiagnosed. This research will aid in the diagnosis and the development of accommodations for reading difficulties and a more thorough understanding of how these difficulties can go undetected by educators.

Previous Education

University of Dublin Trinity College Applied Linguistics 2020
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki English Language & Literature 2018

Links

https://www.linkedin.com/in/joy-tr

Mr Facundo Rodriguez

  • Deputy Editor-in-Chief of The Scholar magazine
  • The DEIC supports the EIC in the production of The Scholar magazine. Email: deic@gatescouncil.org
Mr Facundo Rodriguez

Mr Facundo Rodriguez

  • Deputy Editor-in-Chief of The Scholar magazine
  • The DEIC supports the EIC in the production of The Scholar magazine. Email: deic@gatescouncil.org

I grew up in the beautiful city of Pilar in Argentina but left to pursue a BSc Politics and Philosophy at LSE. As an undergraduate, I became particularly intrigued by questions regarding the nature of goodness and evil and dedicated my dissertation to the (apparent) incompatibility between the existence of God and the evil in our world. During my MSc Political Theory at LSE, I continued to inquire into the intricate nature of moral properties and their normativity through the close study of Kant, Hobbes, Marx and Aristotle. I ultimately came to think that the normativity of ethics might not spring from rationality but from requirements of interpersonal relations. With this in mind, I devoted my MPhil Philosophy research at Cambridge to uncovering what love and friendship are all about. I will continue this study in my PhD by asking whether acting ethically is a necessary presupposition of acting with someone. I hope my project will offer a framework to understand not only the source of the normativity of moral demands but also the moral dimension of our personal and political relations with each other. I am humbled to join the Gates Cambridge community and look forward to working with such a talented group of scholars.

Previous Education

University of Cambridge Philosophy 2021
London School of Economics & Political Science (Un Political theory 2020
London School of Economics & Political Science (Un Politics and Philosophy 2019

Links

https://www.linkedin.com/in/frodriguezx2
https://facundorodriguez.site

Ms Adaiah Hudgins-Lopez

  • Assistant Editor of The Scholar magazine
  • The Associate Editor is part of a three-person team which produces The Scholar magazine. Email: ae@gatescouncil.org
Ms Adaiah Hudgins-Lopez

Ms Adaiah Hudgins-Lopez

  • Assistant Editor of The Scholar magazine
  • The Associate Editor is part of a three-person team which produces The Scholar magazine. Email: ae@gatescouncil.org

I was born in Detroit, Michigan and spent my teenage years in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. During my studies in Anthropology and English at Bowdoin College, I explored how humans express differences in their lived experiences to each other. I was a recipient of the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship, where I studied how storytelling can facilitate communication across differences in the context of school district community engagement. My professional experiences after Bowdoin solidified and honed my commitment to serving people while introducing me to the intersections of law, community engagement, and the American immigration system. This MPhil in Social Anthropology allows me to continue learning about the relationship between legal systems and immigrant communities in anthropological research. I plan to continue researching immigration law, legal consciousness, and how undocumented immigrants form collective identity in order to elevate immigrant voices and to promote the autonomy of immigrant communities. I am honored to join the Gates Cambridge community, where we all strive to learn how to serve people better.

Previous Education

Bowdoin College Anthropology, English 2018

Alumni Association

Once Scholars graduate they automatically become members of the Gates Cambridge Alumni Association (GCAA). The GCAA Board, whose work is funded by the Trust, aims to build a global network of alumni dedicated to improving the lives of others, to promote the Gates Cambridge Scholarship and to engage alumni through the exchange of knowledge, academic ideas and professional development.

Halliki Voolma

  • Co-Chair
Halliki Voolma

Halliki Voolma

  • Co-Chair

I was born in Tallinn, Estonia, but at the age of ten moved to Hungary with my family and then to the UK for university. I earned my Bachelors, MPhil and a PhD degree at King's College, Cambridge where I was awarded a Gates scholarship for my PhD. My doctoral research at the Department of Politics and International Studies addressed intimate partner violence against women with insecure immigration status in England and Sweden. The study combined survivor and stakeholder interviews with an analysis of theory and national politics. I have also worked with UN Women on the international women, peace and security agenda, and on gender (in)equality research projects as part of a European Commission grant programme and a European Parliament initiative. After finishing my PhD I directed a Health Estonia Foundation spin-off “Action-Metre” - a collective awareness online platform which provides accessible and evidence-based information on the large-scale societal outcomes of individual everyday micro-actions. I am now working at the European Commission on gender equality policy. Dance is one of my life-long passions and at Cambridge I competed with and captained the Cambridge University Dancesport Team.

Alex Kong

  • Co-Chair
Alex Kong

Alex Kong

  • Co-Chair

Being a Gates Scholar has been one of the defining moments of my life so far, and I am delighted to have the opportunity to remain engaged as Co-Chair of the Gates Cambridge Alumni Association. After earning my MPhil in Pharmacology, I completed my PharmD at the University of Kansas and made a critical decision to switch fields from the pharmaceutical sciences to global health. For two years, I worked at the Access to Medicine Foundation, a global health non-profit based in Amsterdam that assesses the policies, commitments, and actions of some of the largest global pharmaceutical companies in ensuring access to medicine for patients in low- and middle-income countries. My role as the R&D lead on the Access to Medicine Index involved dissecting the pipelines of 20 pharmaceutical companies and challenging companies to ensure that these projects were available as quickly and broadly as possible through systematic and advance access planning during clinical development. I am currently a PhD student in International Health at Johns Hopkins University with the goal of advancing access to innovative health technologies.

Previous Education

University of Kansas

Links

https://www.linkedin.com/in/alex-kong-4415b76b

Megan Sim

  • Treasurer
Megan Sim

Megan Sim

  • Treasurer

My academic research and career has been driven by my passion for using evidence to improve the lives of others – particularly children and people who are disadvantaged and vulnerable. My PhD research examined what actually happens when juveniles are interviewed by police officers; in particular, I examined the interrogation techniques used by police officers, and the effectiveness of these techniques at eliciting different responses from the young suspects.
Since completing my doctorate in 2014 I have used my research skills to design, lead and conduct evaluations, including of UK and European public policy initiatives at RAND Europe in Cambridge, UK, and more recently of international development projects at the Centre for Evaluation and Development in Mannheim, Germany.

Genevieve Barrons

  • Operations Officer
Genevieve Barrons

Genevieve Barrons

  • Operations Officer

Sanjana Mehta

  • Co-Lead, Global Personal and Professional Development
Sanjana Mehta

Sanjana Mehta

  • Co-Lead, Global Personal and Professional Development

Sanjana is an Advocacy Director at (ISC)2, the world’s largest education and membership association for cybersecurity practitioners.

Sanjana has lived and worked in India, Belgium, U.S. and the U.K. Creating relevant and engaging education products and services for different age groups, sectors and geographies has been a through line in her career. She has designed and led large professional development events, formed partnerships across academia-industry-government ecosystem, built and grown teams, set vision for new products, and established go-to-market strategies.

As a Gates Scholar, Sanjana completed an MPhil and a PhD in Education.

Sanjana is a life-long learner. In 2020, she completed an Executive MBA from Cranfield University. More recently, she has been exploring the lives and works of different philosophers as part of an online philosophy school.

Previous Education

Bangalore University MSc Psychology 2000
Mount Carmel College, Bangalore BA Psychology, Economics & Sociol. 1998

Links

https://www.linkedin.com/in/sanjana-mehta

Paul Bergen

  • Communications Officer
Paul Bergen

Paul Bergen

  • Communications Officer

I work as a management consultant with a focus on healthcare, mostly in diabetes and oncology. My work uses analytics and healthcare data from insurers, patients, and doctors ("real world data") to improve clients' marketing and sales strategy and operations.

Greg Nance

  • Co-Lead, Global Personal and Professional Development
Greg Nance

Greg Nance

  • Co-Lead, Global Personal and Professional Development

To showcase challenges in global education access, Greg Nance has run many of the most demanding footraces on the planet, including a 250KM ultramarathon across the Gobi Desert and a 200KM through the Malaysian jungle. He is sponsored by Brooks Running where he writes popular articles on his training, running philosophy and race reflections. In 2016 Greg was named the "12 Ambassador" to the Seattle Seahawks where his ultra running has appeared in TV commercials for Delta Air Lines. Greg is also a social entrepreneur who has dedicated his career to expanding educational opportunities through mentorship. He founded Dyad.com, an online mentorship platform that helps students earn scholarships, while a member of Fitzwilliam College at Cambridge University. PayPal named the company "Asia's Most Promising Startup” in 2015. As a Truman Scholar at UChicago, Greg co-founded Moneythink, an NGO providing inner-city teens with financial capability mentorship to boost college enrollment and success. President Obama named the organization a “Champion of Change” in 2012. In recognition of his work in global education, the Jefferson Awards for Public Service named Greg a "Globe Changer” in 2011. 

Kofi Boakye

  • Director of Membership, Africa
Kofi Boakye

Kofi Boakye

  • Director of Membership, Africa

Kofi is an academic, a social entrepreneur and a mentor who is passionate about the development of young people and Africa. He moved to Clare Hall as a Junior Research Fellow after completing his MPhil and PhD at St Edmund’s College. His research takes an interdisciplinary approach to issues of crime and development with particular interest in youth and gender-based violence. Kofi has published widely in high-impact journals in the fields of psychology, law and criminology. He serves on several journal editorial boards. He has been a visiting fellow to universities in the US and Africa, including Cornell University School of Law, State University of New York and University of Ghana. Kofi is the founder of the Oxbridge African Mentorship Programme, a charity that provides mentoring for young talents in Africa. He is also co-founder of the African Institute for Crime, Policy and Governance Research, a think tank based in Ghana that promotes high quality research on crime, justice and governance issues to inform policy in Africa.

Links

https://www.linkedin.com/in/kofi-boakye-0788285

Yingjie Liu

  • Director of Membership, Americas East
Yingjie Liu

Yingjie Liu

  • Director of Membership, Americas East

Songqiao Yao

  • Director of Membership, Asia-Pacific
Songqiao Yao

Songqiao Yao

  • Director of Membership, Asia-Pacific

Songqiao Yao is the founder and CEO of Wildbound.earth, an innovative nature-inspired education and sustainability consulting venture based in Beijing, China. After her Mphil in Geography from Cambridge as a Gates Scholar, Songqiao went on to study for an MBA as a Skoll Scholar at Oxford Said Business School.

Previous Education

Mount Holyoke College 2007

Links

http://www.wildbound.earth
http://www.linkedin.com/songqiaoyao

Andrea Cabrero Vilatela

  • Director of Membership, Latin America & the Caribbean
Andrea Cabrero Vilatela

Andrea Cabrero Vilatela

  • Director of Membership, Latin America & the Caribbean