SDDC Science Communication Fellows

SDDC Science Communication Fellows are scientists, researchers, and other science-based professionals who have successfully completed our Science Communication Fellowship and have beed certified through Portal to the Public as current science ambassadors and excellent science communicators. Our fellows are available to share stunning innovations and the joy of science discovery with their community. As part of the Science Communication Fellowship, the scientists develop hands-on activites based on their research that is suitable for ages 5 and up. 

We offer regular Meet a Scientist events at the SD Discovery Center. Chek out our classes and events page for upcoming dates.

Please contact our fellows directly to schedule a visit with your school, afterschool program, library, or community event.

* The scientists marked with an asterisk are NASA@MyLibrary Fellows, additionally trained to present programs using distance technology. Jump to our NASA@MyLibrary Scientists.

Meet our fellows!

Cohort Spring 2019 - I

SD EPSCoR Fellows

  • Mercy Adoma Fosu, Chemistry and Biochemistry at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Origin of Chemistry | Contact Mercy
  • Katrina Donovan, Dragonmaterials LLC in Rapid City
    ACTIVITY: 3D Printing: Layer-By-Layer | Contact Kat
  • Kim-Doang Nguyen, Mechanical Engineering at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Move It! | Contact Kim
  • Paul Okello, Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Roots are Rooted for Life | Contact Paul
  • Joshua Reineke, Pharmaceutical Sciences at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: NanoMed PLINKO| Contact Josh
  • Mukesh Roy, Mechanical Engineering at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Life Behind the Cell Wall | Contact Mukesh
  • Trevor Van Den Top, Biology and Microbiology at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Little Frenemies: Molecular Horseplay | Contact Trevor
  • Rachel Willand-Charnley, Chemistry and Biochemistry at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: The Sweet Side of Playing Hide-and-Seek with Cancer | Contact Rachel

Cohort Spring 2019 - II

SD EPSCoR Fellows

  • Felix Acheampong, Chemistry and Biochemistry at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Finding New Drugs for Cancer | Contact Felix
  • Amanda Hyett, Chemistry and Biochemistry at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: The Carlton of Chemistry | Contact Amanda
  • Deepak Joshi, Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Soil is Life, Conserve it. | Contact Deepak
  • Sadia Salam, Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Water vs. Sediment| Contact Sadia
  • Marie Severson, Basic Biomedical Sciences at USD
    ACTIVITY: Using Nanoparticles to Reduce Methamphetamin Toxicity| Contact Marie
  • Prakriti Sharma, Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Drones for Digital Agriculture | Contact Prakriti
  • Buddhika Prasad Rajapaksha, Civil and Environmental Engineering at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Asphalt Pavements | Contact Buddika
  • James Young, Biology and Microbiology at SDSU
    ACTIVITY: Biological Nitrogen Fixation Feeds Our Food | Contact James

    • Cohort Spring 2019 - II from left to right: Buddhika Prasad Rajapaksha, Prakriti Sharma, Felix Acheampong,
      Amanda Hyett, Deepak Joshi, Marie Severson, James Young, and Sadia Salam.

    Cohort Fall 2018
    SD EPSCoR Fellows
    • Paul Gaillard,  Agronomy, Horticulture & Plant Science at SDSU
      ACTIVITY: From Fishing to Farming - How Soybeans Can Save Lakes| Contact Paul
    • Timothy Hansen, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at SDSU
      ACTIVITY: How do we Make Electricity and How Much Does it Cost? | Contact Tim
    • Zhongkui Hong, Biomedical Engineering at USD
      ACTIVITY: How do Cell Mechanics Affect Cardiovascular Disease? | Contact Zhongkui
    • Amos Kwabena Dwamena, Chemistry and Biochemistry at SDSU
      ACTIVITY: Solving Pollution| Contact Amos
    • Bremansu Osa-Andrews, Chemistry and Biochemistry at SDSU
      ACTIVITY: New Drugs Provide Hope for Cancer Patients| Contact Bremansu
    • Alex Rickel, Biomedical Engineering at USD
      ACTIVITY: How strong are your cells?| Contact Alex


    NASA@MyLibrary Fellows

    • * Drew Alton, Physics at Augustana University
      ACTIVITY: The Gravitational Lensing Game| Contact Drew
    • * Lindsay Erickson, Mathematics at Augustana University
      ACTIVITY: Dots and Lines on the Moon | Contact Lindsay
    • * Anahita Haghizadeh, Nanoscience and Nanoengineering at SDSMT
      ACTIVITY: A Trip to the Moon | Contact Anahita
    • * Bhuvan Vemuri, Civil and Environmental Engineering at SDSMT
      ACTIVITY: Waste to Energy | Contact Bhuvan

    Cohort Fall 2018 from left to right: Bremansu Osa-Andrews, Bhuvan Vemuri, Lindsay Erickson,
    Amos Dwamena, Timothy Hansen, Alex Rickel, Drew Alton, Paul Gaillard, and Anahita Haghizadeh

    Cohort Spring 2018

    SD EPSCoR Fellows

    • Srinivas Janaswamy, Dairy and Food Science at SDSU
      ACTIVITY: Biobeads | Contact Srinivas
    • Nathan Jones, Soil Science Division at USDA-NRCS
      ACTIVITY: Soil is Alive!! | Contact Nathan
    • Matti Kuykendall, Soil Science Division at USDA-NRCS
      ACTIVITY: Soils Have Layers | Contact Matti
    • Jevin Meyerink, Biomedical Engineering at SDSMT
      ACTIVITY: Rebuilding Bones | Contact Jevin
    • Anamika Prasad, Mechanical Engineering at SDSU
      ACTIVITY: Know Your Materials | Contact Anamika
    • Jim Stone, Civil and Environmental Engineering at SDSMT
      ACTIVITY: What is you water footprint? | Contact Jim
    • Scott Wood, Nano Science and Engineering at SDSMT
      ACTIVITY: Let's Play Cell! | Contact Scott
    • Cohort Spring 2018 from left to right: Graduate students Mohamed Elfaruk and Aliza Sigdel (accepting
      the fellowship award for Srinivas Janaswamy), Graduate student Mukesh Roy, Anamika Prasad,
      graduate student Josh Feiner, Scott Wood, Rhea Waldman, Jevin Meyerink


    Cohort Fall 2017

    SD EPSCoR Fellows

    • Scyller Borglum, Geology & Geological Engineering at SDSMT
      ACTIVITY: Petroleum Engineering | Contact Scyller
    • Shaydel Davies, Basic Biomedical Sciences at USD
      ACTIVITY: Longterm Effects of Teenage Bullying | Contact Shaydie
    • Jose Gonzalez Hernandez, Agronomy, Horticulture & Plant Science at SDSU
      ACTIVITY:  Genomic Sequencing| Contact Jose
    • Brooke Long, Geology & Geological Engineering at SDSMT
      ACTIVITYSea Shells of the Past and Present: Environmental Change Through Time | Contact Brooke
    • Riley Paulsen, Basic Biomedical Sciences at USD
      ACTIVITY: Fire! Record and Control Live Cockroach Neurons | Contact Riley
    • Eric Sandhurst, Biomedical Engineering at USD
      ACTIVITY: Bone and Cartilage Repair | Contact Eric
    • Padmapriya Swaminathan, Agronomy, Horticulture & Plant Science at SDSU
      ACTIVITY: Grape Ripening and Optimal Harvest | Contact Priya

    Cohort Fall 2017 from left to right: Eric Sandhurst, Brooke Long, Scyller Borglum, Rhea Waldman, Riley Paulsen, Shaydel Davis, Jose Gonzalez Hernandez


    COHORT SUMMER 2017

    SD EPSCoR Fellows

    • Raeann Mettler, Natural Science at Black Hills State University
      ACTIVITY: Primate Evolution | Contact Raeann
    • Cecelia Miles, Biology at Augustana University
      ACTIVITY: Sleepless Fruit Flies | Contact Cecelia
    • Karla Otterpohl, Children’s Health at Sanford Research
      ACTIVITY: All about the Kidney | Contact Karla
    • Hongli Sun, Biomedical Engineering at USD
      ACTIVITY: Bone Regeneration | Contact Hongli
    Cohort Summer 2017 from left to right: Eric Sandhurst (accepting the fellowship award for Hongli Sun), Raeann Mettler, Karla Otterpohl, Cecelia Miles

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    Friends provide on going support so that the
    children and families in our community have access to hands-on science learning, now and in the future.

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