BSA Officers

BSA Officers

Meet the 2019-2020 Biomedical Sciences Student Association officers.  

PRESIDENT

Kasey Belanger - BSA President



KASEY BELANGER

Hometown: Townsend, MA
Program: 
 Physiology
Year in Program:  3rd year
Area of Research: The Role of the Immune System in Blood Pressure Control and End Organ Damage

" Choose a mentor that you feel 100% comfortable around and communicating with."

Selected Accomplishments:

Becoming BSA President and getting two manuscripts published this year.

Favorite AU memory:

Traveling to conferences with my lab members.

Hobbies:

Volunteering with my local dog rescue, kayaking, traveling.


 

VICE PRESIDENT 

Casey Derella - BSA Vice President


CASEY DERELLA  

Hometown: Millville, NJ
Program: 
Physiology
Year in Program:  3rd year
Area of Research: Vascular Health

" You will manage to do things you never thought you could. Don't let something that seems impossible prevent you from trying."

Selected Accomplishment:

Received the Carolina tum Suden/Francis A. Hellebrandt Professional Opportunity Award from the American Physiological Society at this year’s 2019 Experimental Biology Conference.

Favorite AU memory:

Our Physiology Department goes on an annual boat tour down the Savannah River. It’s a great time to spend with faculty and classmates outside of the workplace and a chance to enjoy the river.

Hobbies:

I really enjoy any outdoor activities, especially when they involve getting together with my friends. I also love to work out, binge Netflix, volunteer with a local dog rescue, and trying new places to eat.

 

SECRETARY 

Emily Parker- BSA Secretary


Emily Parker 

Hometown: Spartanburg, SC
Program:
Cellular Biology and Anatomy 
Year in Program: 2nd
Area of Research: Exploring factors associated with muscle atrophy with aging.  

" There are no mistakes only happy accidents. Everything is about perspective, so instead of 'failures' see learning opportunities that will help you grow into a better scientist."

Favorite AU memory:

Hanging out with my friends at trivia night to relax during the middle of the week. Especially, right after we had a major test.

Hobbies:

 I enjoy reading, cooking, playing with my cat, and playing The Sims.

Other Involvments & Activites: 

I am involved in Pedagogy, which is an association on campus that guides students that want to teach. I am not sure if this is a path I want to take in my career, but this club allows me to explore that possibility. I have also attended Georgia Bio events,  which are opportunities for me to expand my network in the industry. There are a vast array of options to get involved on campus and to explore potential career paths. 

 

TREASURER

Caleb Padgett - Tresurer


Caleb Padgett 

Hometown: Aiken, SC
Program:
 Vascular Biology
Year in Program:  2nd 
Area of Research: Cardiometabolic Physiology

“ Successful and unsuccessful people do not vary greatly in their abilities. They vary in their desires to reach their potential.” 

Favorite AU memories:

My favorite memory thus far has been cultivating friendships with others in my class and in my department.

Hobbies:

 I enjoy playing the piano, woodworking, traveling, and playing with my dogs.

Other Involvements & Activites: 

In addition to serving as treasurer of the BSA, I am a member of the Student Health Advisory Council and the Medical Reserve Corps. My involvement in these groups has enriched my educational experience and allowed me to further contribute to the Augusta community.

 

   

SOCIAL CHAIR 

Chandler Goldman - Social Chair


CHANDLER GOLDMAN

Hometown: Lincolnton, GA
Program:
Cell Biology and Anatomy
Year in Program:  5th Year
Area of Research: Cell polarity establishment through microtubule-mediated transport of mRNA

" Work hard when you need to work hard and relax when you need to relax." 

Selected Accomplishment:

I received the "Excellence in Research Award" for in the Cellular Biology and Anatomy program at the 2019 Graduate Research Day; and I am publishing a paper in the journal Development entitled The Egalitarian binding partners Dynein light chain and Bicaudal-D act sequentially to link mRNA to the Dynein motor

Favorite AU memory:

Some of my favorite memories center around my first year of Graduate School. Our study group would meet early in the morning for coffee and we would go over last minute study topics before the test. I know studying doesn't sound like fun, but we really got to know each other during these times and our friendships have continued because of that.

Hobbies:

Running, painting, wood working, and beer brewing

 

HUMANITARIAN 

Caryn Bird - BSA Secretary


CARYN BIRD  

Hometown: Lakeville, MN 
Program:
Molecular Medicine
Year in Program:  4th year
Area of Research: Cancer Immunology

" Keep focused on your studies. Also,use the lab rotations to try out different mentor styles to find a lab that fits with your needs."

Selected Accomplishment:

I competed in the Thee Minute Thesis semi-final round this year, received the peer-nominated "Embodiment of Integrity" Award, I also received The Graduate School Service Award.

Favorite AU memory:

Meeting the Executive Director of Cannonball Kids' cancer (a foundation that funds childhood cancer research) when she visited our lab.  I also got to share my passion for raising awareness of childhood cancers with her and how holding Card Clubs (events to make cards for kids with cancer that Cannonball Kids' cancer distributes) has impacted others on this campus. 

Hobbies:

I enjoy arts and crafts, coloring, and baking.


SGA REPRESENTATIVES


Lindsey Ramirez - SGA Representatives


LINDSEY RAMIREZ 

Hometown: Chicago, Illinois
Program: 
Physiology
Year in Program:  3rd year
Area of Research: My lab studies sex differences in hypertension in relation to the immune system.

" Keep an open mind. Something that you had never considered may become your passion"

Selected Accomplishments:

I successfully passed my comprehensive exams!

Favorite AU memories:

My favorite memory has to be digging for dinosaur bones and naming every disney princess to Bary while at Disney Springs Orlando during the Experimental Biology Conference, singing karaoke on rainy Fridays to Kasey's playlist, and singing "Baby Shark" in the lab.

Hobbies:

I enjoy hiking, camping, zumba, crochet, knitting, binging on shows and movies, and enjoying memes.

 

  

Najeah Okashah - SGA Representative

NAJEAH OKASHAH


Program:
Pharmacology and Toxicology
Year in Program:  4th year
Area of Research: Vascular Health

" Choose a good mentor that you can communicate easily with, and that will help support your career goals."

Selected Accomplishment:

Getting into the Augusta University MD/PhD program

Favorite AU memory:

Optimizing a new assay, and getting a new tool to use in my research.

Hobbies:

I enjoy cooking, reading, and indoor rock climbing.

  


Frederick Baker- SGA Representative


Frederick Baker

Hometown: Macon, GA
Program:
Cellular Biology and Anatomy
Year in Program:  2nd year
Area of Research: My project focuses on using proteomics to discover interacting proteins and mechanisms of RNA-binding proteins

" Finding a great mentor is more important than finding the most interesting or hottest area of research. It's easier to find your passion when you're in a supportive lab that makes you feel at home."

Favorite AU memory:

Those moments when something "just clicks" and you suddenly have a greater understanding of a topic in a class or discover a better way to do an experiment in the lab. It is moments like these where I can tell that I am advancing as a scientist.

Hobbies:

I enjoy playing the guitar, playing video games, going for walks, playing with any dog or cat, and going out to eat.

Other Involvments & Activites:

I am a Senator in the Student Government Association. This experience allows me to grow as a professional outside of the lab and gain experience in the service side of academia.