Graduate Student Advisors to the Dean for DEIJ

The Graduate Advisor to the Dean (GAD) supports policies and initiatives that advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the college. The GAD works with CBS leadership, the CBS DEIJ Committee, as well as CBS students, staff, and faculty.

2023-24 Graduate Advisors to the Dean
Kiran Long-Iyer headshot

Kiran Long-Iyer
Neuroscience Graduate Group

Kiran started at UC Davis in the fall of 2019. Their current research lies at the junction of tool development and application. Specifically, Kiran is engineering an expanded palette of fluorescent serotonin sensors for in vivo imaging and characterizing distinct serotonin signatures in the midbrain and cortex during aversive learning. In graduate school, Kiran has demonstrated passion in addressing issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion in their program’s admission and recruitment efforts. As a GAD, they are committed to maintaining and further developing the CBS DEIJ Leader Fellowship, ensuring Fellows create a strong network and hone project design and implementation skills. They are also excited to facilitate the Bioethics reading group course offered by CBS in the Spring.

Sarah Wang headshot

Sarah Wang
Biochemistry, Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology Graduate Group

Sarah researches the role of DNA methylation in pancreatic cancer using next-generation sequencing technologies and organoid systems. The ultimate goal of her research is to identify new biomarkers that can help in the detection and treatment of pancreatic cancer. Throughout her graduate career, Sarah has been involved in DEI efforts at the graduate group and department level. In her GAD role, Sarah is excited to continue fostering diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice at the college level through various DEIJ initiatives that benefit students, faculty, and staff.

2022-23 Graduate Advisors to the Dean
Alexus Roberts headshot

Alexus Roberts Hugghis
Population Biology Graduate Group

Alexus researches the evolution of biomechanical processes in fish systems. She is especially interested in understanding the diversification and potential constraints placed on functional mechanisms in closely related species. In her GAD role, she helped create and launch the CBS DEIJ Grant and Leader Fellowship, as well as taught an anti-racist reading group course. Her hope is to help grad students and faculty get excited about involvement in a DEI effort, and to make equity and inclusion a central focus of their research and teaching.

Elena Suglia headshot

Elena Suglia
Population Biology Graduate Group

Elena uses a combination of experiments, field work and genomics to understand how native California plants respond to climate change. Specifically, I am interested in how combinations of environmental factors such as temperature, precipitation, and herbivory can affect individual and population phenological dynamics and success. She is deeply committed to issues of diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice in higher education and, in her GAD role, is working to make the College of Biological Sciences more inclusive for people from diverse backgrounds.

2021-22 Graduate Advisor to the Dean
Victoria Watson-Zink headshot

Victoria Watson-Zink
Population Biology Graduate Group

Victoria is an evolutionary marine invertebrate biologist who uses bioinformatics and high-throughput sequencing technologies to explore life-history evolution in terrestrial crabs. She served as the inaugural graduate advisor to the CBS dean for DEI, a role to which she brought her passion for increasing, supporting, and retaining diversity of all kinds in STEM. Her efforts launched several of the DEI programs still being run in the college. For her dissertation, she received the Merton Love Award for Best Dissertation in Ecology and Evolution. Currently, Victoria is a postdoctoral researcher at Stanford University.