Stupka Scholars


Spydel Nardy s a junior at Iowa State University who is majoring in biochemistry with a minor in emerging global diseases. He has served as the secretary for the Stupka Committee since fall 2017 and actively volunteers in the committee. Since spring 2018, Spydel has been involved in undergraduate research in Dr. Dipali Sashital’s lab where he is currently focusing on CRISPR Cascade Type 1-C complex. He also enjoys being a Supplemental Instructor for organic chemistry in Iowa State’s SI program. In the future, Spydel hopes to attend graduate school to pursue a Ph.D. after graduating in spring 2020.

Kayla Uthe is a junior in biochemistry with a minor in environmental studies. She is a research assistant in Dr. Olga Zabotina’s lab, where she is involved in the study of the xyloglucan synthesizing complex formation in the plant cell wall. She is currently fundraising co-chair of the Stupka Symposium Planning Committee, LAS representative of the BBMB Club, and a B&B learning community peer mentor. After graduation, Kayla plans to pursue a career in environmental biotechnology.

Sarah Zelle is currently a junior at Iowa State majoring in biochemistry and genetics. Since May 2017, she has worked in Dr. Eric Underbakke’s lab researching determinants of membrane association in the synaptic GTPase-activating protein SynGAP. She is currently a B&B Learning Community peer mentor, Stupka Symposium Planning Committee media chair, and has been an undergraduate instructional assistant for Genetics Laboratory: BIOL 313L. After graduation, Sarah plans to obtain her Ph.D. in biochemistry and eventually have a career in biomedical research.

Past and Present Scholars

Jacqueline Ehrlich2018B.S. in Agricultural Biochemistry, 2020
Plans to attend graduate school
Bailey Mooney2018B.S. in Biochemistry and Genetics, 2019
Attending medical school at UCLA
Emily Knuth2018B.S. in Agricultural Biochemistry, 2019
Attending graduate school at University of Wisconsin–Madison
Matt Cook2018B.S. in Biochemistry and Genetics, 2019
Attending graduate school at Yale
Lauran Chambers2017B.S. in Biochemistry, 2018
Research Specialist at the University of Pittsburgh Department of Surgery conducting research on specific drug effects on mitochondrial respiration.
Alex Donelson2017B.S. in Biochemistry, 2018
Drew Tonsager2017M.S. in Biochemistry, 2018
Ph.D. Candidate Colorado State University
Adrienne Smith2015, 2016B.S. in Biochemistry, 2016
Morgan Barrett2016B.S. in Biochemistry and Genetics, 2017
Graduate training in Forensic Biology, University of New Haven, CT
Natalie Whitis2016B.S. in Biophysics, 2017
Ph.D. candidate University of California San Francisco
Flora Yen20153rd year dentistry student at the University of Iowa
Zack Young2014Senior Researcher at Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation.
Denis Tamiev20143rd year graduate school Biological Engineering at Iowa State University
Kinsey Cornick2013D.O. Des Moines University 2018
Resident Physician, MO
Kristen McKibben2013Ph.D. candidate at the University of Pennsylvania
Jennifer Kaczynski Meyer2013Scribe in the dermatology department at Unity and Mercy Hospital, MN.
Pursuing graduate training in genetic counseling
Alana Jackson2012M.D. University Minnesota, Duluth 2016
Resident Physician, Spokane Teaching Health Ctr.
Samson Condon2012Ph.D. candidate at University of Wisconsin-Madison
Mollie Tiernan Schubert2011M.S. in Biochemistry, ISU
Research Scientist III, Molecular Genetics Integrated DNA Technologies, Coralville, IA
Johanna Jass Bailey2011Master of Public Health, University of Missouri, 2015
Manager at Elemental Enzymes, Florida
Craig Brown 2011M.D. from University of Chicago, 2016
Surgical resident at University of Michigan
Jackie Souleyrette Rivas2011Ph.D. in Immunology, 2017 University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Postdoctoral fellow Lexington, KY
Dayna Peterson2010Ph.D. Arizona State University, 2017
Currently on maternity leave
Mina Farahbakhsh2009Ph.D. University of Kansas, 2015
4th year medical school University of Kansas
Luke Helgeson2008Ph.D. in Biochemistry
Postdoctoral fellow at the University of Washington
Mara Determan Alexeev2007M.D. University of Iowa, 2012
M.S. Public Health, UC Berkeley, 2016
Currently on maternity leave
Claire Kruesel2006Lecturer for the English Department at Iowa State University