Meet the URSP Advisory Board

Our Advisory Board coordinates events and programs within the URSP program. Learn more about our members below.

Kevin Kapadia

Executive Director

Hi! Welcome to our page. My name is Kevin, and I am excited to be the Executive Director of the URSP Student Advisory Board. I am a fourth-year student majoring in Statistics and Psychology(Behavioral Analysis). I am also an Economics Minor. I previously served as one of the Directors of Events and the Director of Class Representatives. 

My current research interests are in psychology and biostatistics. One of my research projects is on how moral choices impact the endings of video games with multiple endings. Another research project in biostatistics explores single-cell sequencing in liver cells. 

I am also part of the Marine Corps. My other extracurricular interests include running, reading, dancing, hiking, swimming, and playing video games. 

I look forward to sharing my passion for research and the University Research Scholars Program(URSP) as Executive Director. Please feel free to contact me and the other members of the executive board at urspadvisoryboard@gmail.com

Executive Board Members

Sruthika Baviriseaty

Vice Executive Director

Hi! My name is Sruthika, and I’m the Vice Executive Director. I am a 4th-year Biomedical Engineering Major and a Computer Science minor. I have worked on several research projects. My last research project was as a research assistant in the Smart Medical Informatics and Learning Evaluation (SMILE) Lab. I was helping to predict Neurodegenerative Diseases from Retinal Images with Machine Learning. Retinal images are less invasive and cheaper to obtain than traditional MRI images, so we are interested in determining Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s incidence from longitudinal images. 

I am also involved with the University of Florida Science Olympiad and serve as a University of Florida Diabetes Institute Student Ambassador. 

Alisha Patel

Director of Public Relations

Hi! My name is Alisha. I am a fourth-year pursuing a double major in Biochemistry and Anthropology and a Health Disparities in Society Minor. I am the Director of Public Relations and Webmaster. I am pursuing research in the Licht Laboratory, a Multiple Myeloma Epigenetics Laboratory. My current project is on verifying the mechanisms of a gene involved in Multiple Myeloma cell oncogenic drug resistance. I am also the Executive Director of the UF Global Health Case Competition. I also volunteer at the NICU in UF Shands and mentor high school students. In my free time, I enjoy reading, baking, watching sci-fi movies, and sewing/knitting. 

Tori Argenti

Director of Events

Hi! I’m Tori Argenti and I’m a 4th-year Biology Major pursuing a Pathogenesis Minor. I’m the Director of Events on the URSP Student Advisory Board. I work in two different research labs on campus. One is the Clinical Sciences Research Laboratory at the College of Veterinary Medicine, where I am quantifying samples of bat DNA to detect traces of Human Papillomavirus. I also work on invasive ant and soil samples in a lab at the Emerging Pathogens Institute. I am the Co-Founder of the Mental Health Support for Pre-Health Students organization at UF. I am also a UF Pre-Veterinary Medicine Club Member. I enjoy baking and watching old movies.

Mark Itkin

Director of Mentorship

My name is Mark Itkin and I am a fourth-year Mechanical Engineering major and Computer Science Minor. I’m serving as a Director of Mentorship in the URSP Student Advisory Board. My current research is on PATCOOL: Passive Thermal Coating Observatory Operating in Low Earth Orbit. PATCOOL is a research project working to analyze the properties and abilities of a thermal coating when in the vacuum of space. This is to be done by creating a CubeSat, a standard set by research labs from California Polytechnic State University and Stanford University to facilitate access to space for university students through using small, cube-based satellites. The project is being worked on in the ADAMUS (ADvanced Autonomous MUltiple Spacecraft) labratory at UF and our group is working in partnership with groups at NASA. PATCOOL is still in development, and tests are being performed to help validate its design and the system is currently being manufactured. As part of the team, I am assisting with the finite element analysis (FEA) of the structure through the use of Femap, along with CAD work and mechanical assembly. I am also the President of Gatorloop; a UF Student Design Team that designs and manufactures a Hyperloop vehicle for the SpaceX Hyperloop Competition. I love basketball and am an avid Miami Heat fan.

Matthew Po

Director of Research Seminars

Hi! I am Matthew Po, and I am the Director of Research Seminars. I’m responsible for recruiting students to speak at research seminars and planning/running the monthly research seminars. I’m a fourth-year majoring in chemical engineering and economics; I am also minoring in mathematics. My research is currently on the Characterization of Magnetic Nanoparticles. I work with Dr. Carlos Rinaldi to synthesize and characterize magnetic nanoparticles. I currently focus on writing MATLAB code to automate the analysis of TEM images. I play the piano in my free time. 

Savanna Downing

Historian

Hi! My name is Savanna Downing, and I’m the URSP Student Advisory Board Historian. I was the URSP Executive Director the previous academic year. I’m a senior pursuing a Bachelor of Music Performance with a Minor in Sociology and a Masters of Science in Management. I am currently doing research in the field of Arts in Medicine. I am also in the UF Marching Band and Orchestra; in my free time, I like to play soccer. 

Ashley Jenkins

Director of Mentorship

Hi! My name is Ashley Jenkins and I am a fourth-year Zoology major. I’m one of the Directors of Mentorship and am responsible for matching mentors/mentees and facilitating interactions between mentors and mentees. I’m researching social avoidance behavior and its relation to regeneration in spiny mice. I’m also involved with the Florida Cicerones and am an Employer Relations Ambassador.

Karina LaRubbio

Director of Events

Hello! My name is Karina, LaRubbio and I’m one of the Directors of Events in the URSP Student Advisory Board. I’m a second-year pursuing a computer science major. I’m currently involved in Dr. Jonathan Licht’s Lab in the UF Health Cancer Center. I’m currently working through the Department of Computer & Information Sciences & Engineering on projects involving creating real-world training environments through virtual reality, using software like Unity. My research interests are mostly in human-computer interaction and design. I’m also involved in Gator TPED and Phi Sigma Rho, a sorority for women in engineering. Some fun facts about me: I love all things Disney and am a sucker for a good rom-com.

Komal Handoo

Secretary Director

Hi! My name is Komal Handoo. I’m the URSP Student Advisory Board Secretary Director.

Cameron Courtney

Class Representative Director

Hi! My name is Cameron Courtney, and I am one of the Class Representative Directors. 

Willy Sobczak

Class Representative Director

Hi! My name is Willy Sobczak, and I am one of the Class Representative Directors. 

Committee Members

Ambreen Imran

Class Representative of 2019

Hi! My name is Ambreen Imran and I am a third-year Psychology (Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience Track) Major and a Health Disparities Minor. I’m one of the Class Representatives of 2019. I’m responsible for outreach with the URSP Class of 2019 and am a TA for the URSP Class of 2019 Canvas page. My CURE class was on investigating the effectiveness of mobile interventions to combat alcohol addiction and misuse among college-aged students. This class falls into the realm of research topics I am interested in: psychology, public health, and health disparities. I plan on pursuing Neuroscience/Psychology research during my time here at UF.
I’m involved with the Neuroscience Club, Pakistani Student Association, Islam on Campus, Period Movement at UF, and Gatorship Participant. I enjoy spending time in nature, reading the news, discussing social issues, and listening to music. I look forward to working closely with the C/O 2019 and being their liaison in URSP!

Zachery Utt

Class Representative of 2019

Hi! I am a second-year Computer Science and Statistics double major. I’m one of the Class Representatives of 2019 and my responsibilities include outreach to the URSP Class of 2019 and as a TA for the URSP Class of 2019 Canvas Page. My research interests include computer Simulations of physics and geometric algorithms to predict configurations of chemical bonds at the atomic and macro biological levels. I’m part of the Gator Band, App Development, and Student Government. 

Lily Monaghan

Secretaryship Committee

Hi! My name is Lily Monaghan, and I am a member of the Secretaryship committee. 

Olusegun Sobanjo

Events Committee

Hi! My name is Olusegun Sobanjo, and I am on the Events Committee. I am a second-year Health Science Major. My current research project is on Sonic Landscapes. In my free time, I play soccer, violin, and piano. I am also a member of the American Physician Scientist Association. 

Milana Mudra

Public Relations Committee

Hi! My name is Milana Mudra, and I am a member of the Public Relations committee. 

Jake Shannin

Research Seminar Committee

Hi! My name is Jake Shannin, and I am a member of the Research Seminar committee. 

Daniel Marquina

Research Seminar Committee

Hi! My name is Daniel Marquina, and I am a member of the Research Seminar committee. I am a 4th-year Microbiology major. I am currently researching C. difficile; I am culturing microorganisms in the human and murine microbiota that confer resistance against C. difficile infection. 

Sophie Clark

Research Seminar Committee

Hi! My name is Sophie Clark, and I am a member of the Research Seminar committee. I’m a second year majoring in Astrophysics. I am currently working with Dr. Elizabeth Lada in the Astronomy Department studying circumstellar disks and young stellar objects in the Orion region. 

Sarah McMorrow

Mentorship Committee

Hi! My name is Sarah McMorrow and I am a third-year majoring in Animal Science and minoring in Business Administration. I am on the URSP Student Advisory Board Mentorship Committee. I am currently in the Florida plants and climate change CURE class but I am interested in getting involved in research focused on animal behavior and welfare, specifically with cattle or horses. I play Club Softball and am part of the Pre- Veterinary Medicine club. I also volunteer at an animal hospital and work at Gatorwell as a Health Hut Wellness Educator. 

Faith Kern

Mentorship Committee

Hi! My name is Faith Kern, and I am a member of the Mentorship committee. 

Julia Garcia

Mentorship Committee

Hi! My name is Julia Garcia, and I am a member of the Mentorship committee. 

Lyndsey LaBorde

Mentorship Committee

Hi! My name is Lyndsey LaBorde, and I am a member of the Mentorship committee.