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Master of Arts in

Bioethics & Science Policy

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Jordan-Anderson

Jordan Anderson

In 2018, I graduated from Xavier University of Louisiana with a BS in Chemistry and the intention to pursue medical school. While having gone to school to become a scientist, philosophy and the arts had always drawn my attention. One of my favorite classes at Xavier was “Problems in Philosophy.” For the final, I wrote an essay on whether or not we could prove our own existence and if it matters. There, I was able to relate what I had learned in neuroscience and physics about the brain and about visual and auditory perception to logical and abstract debate. In doing so, I realized that science itself is an art. Post-graduation, and in a gap year I took to further discern my career goals, I became increasingly interested in how technology and the media have changed science and our society today. I chose Duke University’s MA in Bioethics and Science Policy program because it fulfills my desire to discuss and to become proactive on the complex issues in science that exist today. In this program, I look forward to not only increasing my knowledge in STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) and policy, but I also look forward to serving the community through the arts of ethics, journalism, and public engagement.

 

Jayun-Bae

Jayun Bae

I graduated from the University of Toronto in 2019 with a double major in Neuroscience and Philosophy (Bioethics). In my undergraduate years, I engaged in research across a variety of fields, including developmental neuroscience, sociolinguistics, primary education, data science, and internet privacy, before realizing that my common interest in these areas was ethics. I completed an undergraduate fellowship at the University of Toronto Centre for Ethics and now specialize in neuroethics. I am particularly interested in aging and dementia, healthcare disparities for minority communities, and data privacy. I hope to use my time in the MA program in Bioethics and Science Policy to gain greater knowledge and compassion so that I can become a clinical bioethicist and help others in a struggling healthcare system.

 

Dale-Boyd

Dale Woods Boyd III

I am a North Carolina native, graduating from Cary high school. In my senior year, I was named Star Male Athlete after becoming a high school wrestling All-American and All-State in golf. I attended the University of Missouri on a wrestling scholarship. I obtained a degree in Biology with minors in Psychology and Chemistry. I have aspirations to attend medical school and become a physician, like my father and grandfather. I have a passion for mental health and fitness. I hope to make an impact in this area by improving the overall health and fitness of my community and reducing the negative stigma associated with mental health. “People may forget what you said, what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”- Maya Angelou

 

Bobbie Burrows

Bobbie Burrows

I am a joint-degree student pursuing a JD and MA in Bioethics & Science Policy at Duke. I graduated from Wartburg College in 2016 where I was a part of the Engineering Science program. I joined the MA in Bioethics and Science Policy program because I have a fascination with technology and new ideas that emerge into the world and the legal and ethical implications that accompany them. After graduation I hope to work in Intellectual Property and possibly Patent Law.

 

Meghan-Fitzgerald

Meghan Fitzgerald

I graduated from the University of South Carolina in 2018 with a dual Bachelor of Science in Experimental Psychology and Criminology/Criminal Justice. Throughout my education, I have developed a particular fascination with Neurology and Cognitive Neuroscience. I was fortunate enough to quickly find myself working as a Clinical Study Manager for Elligo Health Research. In my research, I focus on Cognitive Neuroscience and Psychiatric Clinical Trialing. I am so excited to continue my education at Duke through the Masters of Bioethics and Science Policy Program. I believe there is no more ideal place to integrate my previous work experience and my future ambitions of becoming a Neurologist, specializing in mental illness and brain damage on behavior.

 

Lauren-Gibbs

Lauren Gibbs

I graduated from Baylor University in 2019 with a degree in Medical Humanities. During my undergraduate career, I became enthralled by the implications of science, technology, and policy, after I enrolled as a participant of research. My involvement in a clinical trial that eventually lead to an FDA approved therapy, opened my eyes to not only the numerous ethical issues that are prevalent in medicine today but also the need for health care advocacy and policy. By attaining my Master’s degree in Bioethics and Science Policy at Duke, I have the unique opportunity to pursue my interests in advocacy, policy, and ethics. After graduating, I hope to work in the pharmaceutical industry.

 

Sage Gustafson

Sage Gustafson

I have always been fascinated by the art of engaging people, and the moment when that engagement can become life changing. This fascination propelled me into the world of music, and in 2017 I graduated from Oregon State University with an H.B.S. in music, specifically flute performance. During the course of that program however, I had a life changing experience that pulled me out of a career in music and refocused my fascination on the role of inequality in healthcare. Motivated by my frustration with injustices, I decided to pursue a medical degree with the goal of dual enrolling in a MPH or Bioethics program. The MA in Bioethics and Science Policy program at Duke is giving me the opportunity to study the systemic ways biases influence health care, and the practical tools to address the resulting health disparities. I still plan to acquire a medical degree after I complete this program and pursue a career in health care advocacy and education.

 

Kelly Hamachi

Kelly Hamachi

I am a joint JD/MA student in the Bioethics & Science Policy program here at Duke. In 2015, I graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a BA in public health. After college, I spent a year working at Stanford University’s Clinical Excellence Research Center examining ways to lower the cost of health care delivery. As a dual degree student, I am interested in the legal and ethical aspects of research, clinical trials, and the use of health care technologies.

 

Nathan-Iyer

Nathan Iyer

I graduated from Vanderbilt University with a Bachelors in Neuroscience and a minor in Computer Science. I am primarily interested in the intersection between science communication and the overall sustainability of our economic, political, medical, and ecological systems. After observing the systemic disconnect between cutting-edge research, public perception, and policy, I am hoping to investigate how research institutions can better publicize and defend scientific conclusions. I furthermore am interested in the philosophical underpinnings of our economic and social systems and the changes necessary to allow for timely decarbonization and climate change mitigation to prevent ecological and social collapse. My primary goal in this program is to explore topics in communications, energy, economics, and computer science to provide a strong foundation for a high-impact career.

 

Kevin Kallmes

Kevin Kallmes

I am a rising 2L student at Duke University Law School, where I hope to gain the requisite skills to become involved in the legal aspects of healthcare and technology transactions in 2020. I am concurrently completing an MA in Bioethics and Science Policy, which I hope contributes to my further understanding of medical technology regulation. I recently finished an internship in Neuroethics with the BRAIN Initiative at the National Institutes of Health. I created risk assessments concerning the data sharing and privacy ethical questions for novel neurotechnologies. Lastly, I am the President of Superior Medical Experts, Inc, in which capacity I oversee medical research and writing projects. I have contributed to over 150 medical publications and helped compose grants concerning stroke embolectomy devices, immunotherapies, and neuroregenerative therapies.

 

Sophia McNatton

Sophia McNatton

I graduated from NC State University with a BS in Genetics. During my time at State, I was involved in research projects that spanned topics from understanding the genes underlying different tail shapes in cichlid fish to improving breeding efforts in Christmas trees. While I enjoyed my time pursuing traditional lab work, the most formative experiences in my undergraduate career came from working as a teaching assistant in the biochemistry department. Working with other students led me to discover a love for science education and communication, which resulted in my decision to further explore these topics in graduate school. By pursuing my master’s degree through Duke’s Bioethics and Science Policy program, I hope to one day improve discussion surrounding many topics in bioethics, particularly in the areas of animal ethics and environmental policy.

 

Athena Mouros

Athena Mouros

I am a joint degree student in the JD/MA in Bioethics and Science Policy program. In 2019, completed my BA in Philosophy and Medicine, Health, and Society at Vanderbilt University. During my undergraduate career, I worked in a lab that sought to understand the impact of neurological diseases on speech production. This work, along with the health services and policy research experience that I gained interning at the Joint Commission and the Chicago Department of Public Health, fueled my interest in the intersection between mental health and the law. I hope to use to my time at Duke to better understand the ethical underpinnings of this intersection, specifically with regards to mental health research and the delivery of mental health care.

 

Karina Moy

Karina Moy

After graduating from Williams College in 2014 with degrees in English and biology, I worked at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York on an investigation of Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities fraud. I gained an appreciation for the power and meticulousness of law and sought to combine my passion for human health with a legal education at Duke. I am currently pursuing a joint JD/MA in Bioethics & Science Policy.

I am involved in Duke’s Cancer Pro Bono Project and am eager to take advantage of more clinics, clubs, and course offerings relating to healthcare in the coming years. Though I anticipate this program greatly broadening my career horizons, for now I hope to become a federal prosecutor to protect healthcare rights and access for all Americans.

 

Alexander-Mussgnug

Alexander Mussgnug

I graduated from the University of Konstanz with a degree in applied economics and a passion for multidisciplinary and international collaboration. My interdisciplinary approach also translated to my professional endeavors in big data and artificial intelligence and my voluntary work in science communication. With the MA in Bioethics and Science Policy at Duke, I aspire to broaden my horizons and investigate the implications of technology from a social, ethical, legal, and economic perspective. Moreover, I hope to utilize my Fulbright scholarship to foster international understanding and cooperation, as I believe viable solutions to these challenges have to be sought at a global level.

 

Austin-Odling

Austin Odling

I graduated in 2018 from Wheaton College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology. My study as an undergraduate exposed me to a wide range of scientific topics and spent a considerable amount of time discussing the how and why of what we do as scientists. Within these discussions, the field of genetics grabbed my interest in particular. As a rapidly expanding field, genetic conversations in the public sphere are becoming more and more prevalent, yet to many, the intricacies of the research and its implications remain clouded. I’m joining the Duke Masters in Bioethics and Science Policy program because I believe it will give me the knowledge, skills, and opportunity to bring cross-disciplinary discussion of important genetic concepts into greater society.

 

Michael Pflanzer

Michael Pflanzer

Before coming to Duke, I served in the United States Navy as a Reactor Mechanic on the U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln. After leaving the military, I realized that working in nuclear plants, while lucrative, was not the path for me. I graduated from Edgewood College (Madison, WI) with degrees in Neuroscience, Psychology, and Philosophy and a burgeoning desire to be a part of the growing field of Bioethics. I see myself in a role where I can explore the ethical implications of research in genomics and neuroscience and liaison with the general public. Everyone will be affected by the consequences – good and bad – of 21st-century science, yet the general public is largely assumed to be too uninformed to be included in the conversation. It is my sincere hope and belief that the Bioethics and Science Policy program will prepare me as I seek a path in which I can educate laypeople so that they too can be a part of bioethical discourse.

 

Charles-Provine

Charles Provine

I am a JD/MA in Bioethics and Science Policy candidate here at Duke. I graduated from Mississippi State University in 2019 with a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. I have worked as a research assistant for the Army Corps of Engineers’ Engineering Research and Development Center in an environmental chemistry laboratory as well as for the Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine in an influenza laboratory. During the summer of 2018, I completed an internship with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, working on communications and policy projects. After completion of the joint degree program, I intend to practice law. I currently have a strong interest in healthcare regulatory law but hope to explore various practice areas over the course of my studies at Duke.

 

Roshan-Rama

Roshan Rama

I graduated from Santa Clara University with majors in Economics and History. During my education, I completed a fellowship at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics. The opportunity inspired my appreciation for the nuance that exists in our world. Moreover, the experience relied on the collaborative approaches that are central to Duke’s Science & Society initiative.

In studying history, I know that each generation is inclined to think that the current developments are unique. I am as fallible as any generation in my assessment. Nevertheless, I arrive at Duke mindful of immense change spurred on by innovation. I am eager to understand how we will meet the present challenges, and I look forward to doing that within a cohort of peers.

 

Alison-Sechrest

Alison Sechrest

I am a joint degree student pursuing a JD and MA in Bioethics and Science Policy. I graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with a BS in Psychobiology. While at UCLA, I was a student researcher in a traumatic brain injury lab at the Geffen School of Medicine. Though I enjoyed examining the relationship between the brain and behavior in both the lab and my major, I felt most productive when forced to think about the impact and practical uses of science. As a result, I am interested in legal issues regarding biomedical research and healthcare, and I look forward to exploring the intersection of these fields in the JD/MA program.

  • Staff Editor, Duke Law Journal

 

Ben Shepard

Ben Shepard

I earned a BA in New Media Studies from the University at Buffalo. After graduation, I went on to build one of Western New York’s leading web development companies: 360PSG. As a partner and Creative Director there, I managed brand and design direction, developed internal marketing strategy and corresponding design material, and consulted with new and existing clients to develop their own web marketing solutions.

In 2015, I transitioned to Duke University, joining the Initiative for Science & Society as Associate Director of Marketing & Communications. The shift has provided much desired exposure to a wide variety of scientific and social topics. While I’m particularly interested in burgeoning tech and issues surrounding data privacy, I am endlessly curious about any research that currently pushes the bounds of human progress. I look forward to expanding my knowledge in science, policy, and ethics as they relate to science communication, journalism, and public engagement.

 

Kelly Todd

Kelly Todd

I am a student in the JD/MA in Bioethics & Science Policy program. I graduated from the College of William and Mary with a BA in Psychology and Health Psychology in 2015. During my undergraduate education I worked on an NIH-funded EEG study that looked at attentional biases in children towards tobacco and alcohol-related stimuli. Following college, I spent a year working in trauma psychology research, where I became interested in the legal side of scientific invention and innovation. I decided to pursue an education in science and the law so that in the future I may hopefully have the opportunity to work in intellectual property as it pertains to the life sciences.

 

Jenny Wang

Jenny Wang

I am a joint degree student currently pursuing a JD and MA in Bioethics & Science Policy. After graduating from Duke with a BS in Biology, I taught high school science for two years in rural North Carolina as a Teach For America corps member. I return to Duke hoping to find the same interdisciplinarity I enjoyed as an undergraduate as I explore the relationship between science and the law. I am ultimately interested in a career in intellectual property litigation.

 

Cole Wilhelmi

Cole Wilhelmi

I am a joint degree candidate pursuing a JD and MA in Bioethics and Science Policy. I earned my bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in May of 2016. I worked for a year at the UNC Environmental Finance Center, where I assisted in research projects related to public utility finance and water system rate structures. In law school, I am actively involved in Duke Environmental Law Society and Health Law Society. I am specifically interested in how new developments in medical technology, forensics, and gene editing inform the way that judges apply existing laws and how policymakers create new laws to accommodate scientific innovations.

 

Rishita Yeduri

Rishita Yeduri

I graduated from East Carolina University in 2018 with a degree in Biology and a minor in statistics. My aspirations of becoming a physician were confined to the treatment of patients but I came to understand that medicine is more of an art than a science. In an effort to delve into the art, I did research at the Brody School of Medicine. Getting the opportunity to present at research conferences across the nation exposed me to the interdisciplinary nature of medicine. The impact certain policies had on research methodologies really intrigued me. I wanted to gain a better understanding of past and current science policies to allow my work to transcend beyond the research lab and into the patient room. After graduation, I pursued one of my passions of teaching by becoming an AmeriCorps VISTA for a nonprofit focused on creating resilient and empowered youth. Through this experience, I observed various societal inequalities, especially in marginalized communities. I realized that cultural competency and trust are at the forefront of health care. I hope to gain trust with individuals and become aware of ethical complexities that might arise in healthcare. I am pursuing this MA in Bioethics and Science Policy to be a better-informed physician and bridge the healthcare inequality gap in the future.

 

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