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scientist and test tubes

Science in Action

During each semester, the Science in Action Lecture Series is held every Monday at 4:30 p.m. in Building 7, Room 7106.

This weekly series is presented in partnership with the San Francisco State University Bridges to Baccalaureate Program, the Skyline College Science and Math Division, and the Math, Engineering, Science Achievement Program (MESA).

The lecture series is free and open to the public. The topics vary and are geared not only towards science, but the entire college experience, so we encourage non-science students to attend. Attendance confirmation slips will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there!

For more information on the Science in Action Lecture Series, please contact Nick Kapp, or Alana Utsumi.

Spring 2018 Lecture Schedule

January 22, 2018

First Science in Action Meeting for Spring 2018

Jennifer Taylor-Mendoza, PhD; Interim Vice-President of Instruction, Skyline College

Dr. Jennifer Taylor-Mendoza has more than fifteen years of experience as an educator in the California Community College system.  Her career started at Pasadena City College in 2002 before she took a tenured position at San Bernardino Valley College. While a tenured counseling faculty member, she also taught Psychology. Most recently, as the Dean of Academic Support and Learning Technologies at College of San Mateo, she led transformative programs and initiatives in support of student achievement. Currently, she is the Vice President of Instruction at Skyline College.

Dr. Jennifer Taylor-Mendoza began her educational journey at El Camino College. She holds a B.A. in Psychology from California State University, Los Angeles, an M.S. in Counseling from California State University, Northridge, and a Ph.D. in Education from Claremont Graduate University. She currently serves as secretary of the Umoja Community Education Foundation and is a member of the Board of Directors for the Human Investment Project (HIP) Housing.  

January 29, 2018

Bruce Greenstein; Bay Area Deputy Sector Navigator for Energy, Construction & Utilities

Bruce Greenstein is a Tenured Professor, Building Performance Contractor, Graphic Designer and Musician.  He joined the Skyline College faculty in 2010 to help create an energy-efficiency/sustainability program, develop curriculum, and teach courses.  In the years since, he has constructed a fully functional Residential House Model, an Insulation Blow Room, a BPI Test Center, created new courses, and was instrumental in the development of Certificate and Associate Degree programs for the new Energy Systems Technology Management department.  His efforts have not gone un-noticed; Bruce is the recipient of the 2013 Sustainability in Education Award presented by Sustainable San Mateo.  Bruce “practices what he preaches” as the Founder and President of Impact Energy, Inc., a general-contracting firm specializing in energy & water efficiency for the built environment.  Currently, Bruce is working for the California Community College Chancellors Office as the Deputy Sector Navigator for Energy, Construction & Utilities in the Bay Area.

February 5, 2018

Steven Weinstein; Associate Professor in Cell and Molecular Biology, San Francisco State University

For the last 30 years, Steve has investigated the molecular mechanisms that regulate the production of chemical signals (cytokines) in macrophages, sentinel cells of the immune system. Since joining the faculty at SFSU 20 years ago, he has enjoyed engaging students in this investigation and helping them to develop as scientists.  He has taught immunology to about 2,000 students and provided research training to over 20 masters students and 30 undergraduates, many of whom were from underrepresented groups in science.  It has been his great pleasure to train even more students in science through his involvement with the NIH Bridges to the Baccalaureate internship program.

February 12, 2018

Maria Mouchess, Ph.D.; Senior Scientific Researcher, Genentech, and SACNAS Chapter President

February 19, 2018 President's Day Holiday - NO LECTURE
February 26, 2018

Arielle Crews, Devan Haresh Shah, Samuel Goodfellow,  Frederick Rodriguez Santana and Carlos Segura; SFSU Graduate and Undergraduate students actively working in laboratories.

The students will discuss their research and personal path in science.  Many are former Community College students, and active members of SACNAS.

March 5, 2018

Annette Garza-Meilandt, PhD, PMP; Senior Project Manager, Oncology Strategic Innovation, Genentech

Annette Garza-Meilandt earned her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the University of Texas at San Antonio in 2005. Although she initially planned to pursue a career in academia, she decided to turn down her post-doc opportunity at Stanford and pursue a career in the pharmaceutical industry. She started with an entry-level position at a medical imaging lab, Synarc, which collects and analyzes medical images for pharmaceutical companies. There she gained experience as a Project Manager that enabled her to acquire a position with Genentech as an Early Clinical Development Project Manager. A mixture of her Project Management experience and her entrepreneurial spirit led to her current position as a Project Manager in Innovation at Genentech. In her current role, she helps integrate technology into the clinical development of oncology medicines.

March 12, 2018

Jasmine To; former Skyline College student, IND Safety Coordinator/Senior Regulatory Specialist; UCSF

Jasmine To attended Washington High School, then Skyline College for 3 years.   She then went on to Cal Poly and graduated in 2 years.  Her major was Animal Science, and she minored in Poultry Management.  She has been at UCSF since 2015, first starting in animal procurement. She will talk about how UCSF creates and has new drug candidates screened by the FDA.   She will also talk about the entry level position of Clinical Resource Coordinator.   If you are interested in drug discovery, med school, or wondering what you can do with your degree after college, this is the place to be. 

March 19, 2018

 Rocky Ng; Biotechnology & Chemistry Instructor, South San Francisco High School

"High School Science Teaching and Propionibacterium acnes Bacteriophages" Rocky Ng is a biotechnology and chemistry teacher at South San Francisco High School. He earned his B.S. in Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics at the University of California, Los Angeles in 2014. In 2017, he obtained his secondary teaching credential in biology and chemistry from the California State University, Long Beach. During his undergraduate and post-baccalaureate studies, he researched on Trichomonas vaginalis pathogenesis and Propionibacterium acnes/Mycobacterium smegmatis bacteriophages. He was able to isolate a novel bacteriophage from his own face, sequenced, and annotated the genome. Rocky is interested in improving high school student learning through student-centered science curriculum while fulfilling his commitment towards educational equity. Currently, Rocky is developing a high school independent research biotechnology curriculum that involves in isolating a novel bacteriophage from environmental samples.

March 26, 2018 Spring Break Holiday - NO LECTURE
April 2, 2018

Obi Okafor, Pharm D.; Postdoctoral Fellow, UCSF - Stanford Center of Excellence in Regulatory Science and Innovation (CERSI)

Title: Pharmacogenomics: Your DNA + Medications

Pharmacogenomics is the study of how genes affect a person's response to drugs. This relatively new field combines pharmacology (the science of drugs) and genomics (the study of genes and their functions) to develop effective, safe medications and doses that will be tailored to a person's genetic makeup.

April 9, 2018

Edward Cox, MBA; Head of Partnering Quality at Genentech, a Member of the Roche Group

Topic: Using a science degree in the commercialization of biotechnology-based products

Skyline College alum (Life Sciences), UC Davis graduate (BS Biochemistry) and current Genentech employee Ed Cox will describe his career choices while working in departments that ultimately facilitated the commercial-scale distribution of medically important products.  Beyond leveraging a degree in science, Ed will give his perspective on other skills required for a successful and meaningful career.

April 16, 2018

Arabella Young, PhD; Postdoctoral Fellow, UCSF

Topic: Immunotherapy

April 23, 2018 Jose Ureta; QC Scientist, Genentech
April 30, 2018

Cory Padilla, Ph.D.; Metagenomic Scientist at Dovetail Genomics, LLC

Cory Padilla recently finished his Ph.D. in Cellular and Molecular Biology at Georgia Institute of Technology. His research employs a broad range of analytical techniques including isotopic chemistry, next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology and bioinformatics to explore the role microbes play in global chemical cycles and to describe the metabolic currencies that dive host-microbe interactions. Cory started his research as an undergraduate at UC Santa Cruz while getting a B.S. in Marine Biology geared towards microbial ecology and biogeochemistry.  Following UCSC, Cory held specialist positions in geochemistry at MIT/Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. During his Ph.D. work at Georgia Tech, he assembled microbial genomes from various marine systems and discovered novel biochemical pathways mediating methane and nitrogen transformations. Cory recently started a job as a metagenomic scientist at Dovetail Genomics, LLC in Santa Cruz, Ca, to develop new ways to sequence and analyze microbial genomes.

May 7, 2018

Alexis Lainoff, Ph.D. Candidate; UCSF.

Alexis is a Ph.D. candidate studying how heads and faces develop and evolve at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). She attended Berkeley City College for two years before transferring to UC Berkeley where she completed a bachelor's degree in Integrative Biology. Alexis worked as a research tech at both UC Berkeley and UCSF for four years before starting a Ph.D. program in Oral and Craniofacial Science at UCSF's School of Dentistry in 2013. For her dissertation work, Alexis studies a disease called "holoprosencephaly," which in its mild forms results in mild midfacial narrowing and in severe forms causes cyclopia (a single eye) in humans. Previously, she studied the development and evolution of the dentition and face in reptiles, with a focus on how turtles lost their teeth evolutionarily.