Meet the Speakers
30th Annual Susan M. Arseven '75 Conference for Women in Science and Engineering
DR. KATELYN JETELINA
Assistant Professor of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston
Dr. Katelyn Jetelina is an epidemiologist, researcher, educator, and Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Texas Health Science Center School of Public Health. During her "free time", she is the founder and sole author of a viral newsletter- Your Local Epidemiologist- that translates public health science, like COVID19, to the community.
DR. DILMA DA SILVA
Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, Texas A&M University
Dilma Da Silva is a Professor and Holder of the Ford Design Professorship II at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Texas A&M University. Her previous roles include Department Head (2014-2019) and Associate Dean (2019-2020). Her primary research interests are distributed systems, operating systems, and computer science education. She currently has projects on cybersecurity, data sciences, and autonomous vehicles. Before joining Texas A&M, she worked at Qualcomm Research (2012-2014), IBM Research (2000-2012), and the University of Sao Paulo (1996-2000).
Dilma is an ACM Distinguished Scientist, a member of the board of CRA-W (Computer Research Association's Committee on the Status of Women in Computing Research), and a co-founder of the Latinas in Computing group. She served as an ACM SIGOPS from 2011 to 2015 and chaired the ACM Senior Award Committee in 2015. She is an Associate Editor for several journals and is on the steering committee of many conferences. She has chaired more than 35 conferences/workshops and participated in more than 100 program committees. Recent leadership roles include Program Co-chair for IEEE ICDCS'21, ACM Middleware'20, Supercomputing'19, and IPDPS'19. She has published more than 80 technical papers and filed 15 patents.
Dilma received her doctoral degree in computer science from Georgia Tech in 1997 and her bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of São Paulo, Brazil. She is passionate about enabling the next generation of talent.
DR. JENNIFER DULIN
Assistant Professor of Biology, Texas A&M University
Jennifer Dulin is an Assistant Professor of Biology at Texas A&M University. She performed her Ph.D. work in Neuroscience under the mentorship of Dr. Raymond Grill in 2012 at the University of Texas Health Science Center, Houston, supported by a T32 training grant. She performed a postdoc in the lab of Dr. Mark Tuszynski at UC San Diego from 2012-2017, supported by a postdoctoral fellowship from the Craig H. Neilsen Foundation. In 2017, she started her independent laboratory focusing on characterizing the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying regeneration following spinal cord injury and neural transplantation. She was named TIRR Foundation Fellow in 2017 and received the Jerry Johnston Andrew Award for spinal cord research in 2021. Dr. Dulin’s research is funded by the NIH, the Craig H. Neilsen Foundation, the Wings for Life Spinal Cord Research Foundation, Mission Connect, and the Paralyzed Veterans of America Research Foundation. She has published in high-impact journals including Nature Medicine, Science Translational Medicine, Nature Communications, and the Journal of Neuroscience. Achievements of Dr. Dulin’s trainees include: a postdoctoral fellowship and a pre-doctoral fellowship awarded to her trainees in the past two years; a running total of 56 poster and oral presentations by lab members since 2017 (12 won awards); 2 manuscripts are currently under review and 4 are in preparation, including 3 undergraduates as first-author; and six undergraduate honors theses published or in progress.
Aerospace Project Engineer, Boeing
From Mableton, Georgia, Tiera Fletcher graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering in 2017. During her senior year at MIT, Tiera also worked as a Rocket Structural Design and Analysis Engineer at The Boeing Company, specifically working on NASA’s Space Launch System: the most powerful rocket ever built that will enable us to send humans to Mars and beyond. As a student, Tiera worked in the Man Vehicle Laboratory, the Gelb Laboratory and the Space Systems Laboratory at MIT, where Tiera worked on defining rotations for astronauts in anti-gravity, completed structural analysis for an unmanned aerial vehicle and underwent research to determine the outer protective layer material for Dava Newman’s BioSuit. As a recipient of the Albert G. Hill Prize, Tiera greatly contributed to the betterment of the minority community on the campus of MIT through her service as the Co-Chair of the Black Students Union and the Co-Chair of the Black Women’s Alliance. At The Boeing Company, she has used both academic and communal experiences as a Rocket Structural Analysis Engineer in Huntsville, Alabama, a Rocket Structural Engineer in New Orleans at NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility, a Structural Design Engineer in San Antonio, Texas, and a Product Life Cycle Engineer working on the Space Launch System. Now, she is a Project Engineer, working on groundbreaking space projects and she has completed a Master of Engineering Management from Duke University.
Outside of work, she focuses on encouraging the youth through mentorship, motivational speaking, and teaching. She has been featured in USA Today, Huffington Post, Guideposts, Essence, MIT News, CNET, NY Times, and Glassdoor to name a few. She has been featured in the North Face She Moves Mountains campaign and the Ad Council She Can STEM campaign. Fletcher has served as a keynote speaker for various events, including National Geographic Science Festival in Italy, The Tory Burch Foundation Embrace Ambition Summit, ImpactCEE Krakow, and much more. Tiera Fletcher is a recipient of the NSBE 21st Century Trailblazer in Human Spaceflight award, BEYA Most Promising Engineer award and others. Fletcher teaches as an Aerospace Engineering instructor for multiple MIT Office of Engineering Outreach Programs (OEOP) including SEED Academy and MOSTEC. Additionally, Fletcher is a mentor for Encouraging Women Across All Borders, Boeing’s HBCU Mentoring Program, and the National Academy of Engineers’ Engineer Girl in addition to her outreach for Disney Dreamers Academy and various academic and nonprofit organizations. She has appeared on BBC/PBS Breakthrough and Discovery Channel’s competition show Rocket Around the Xmas Tree. Fletcher is the co-author of the book Wonder Women of Science, which is now available for purchase via Amazon and other major retailers, in addition to serving as a guest writer for several platforms, including the Shakespeare Theatre. She is the co-founder of Rocket With The Fletchers with her husband, Myron Fletcher, who is also a rocket scientist, and the mother of two sons.
DR. BARBARA GASTEL
Professor of Veterinary Integrative Biosciences and
of Humanities in Medicine, Texas A&M University
Barbara Gastel, an MD specializing in biomedical communication, is professor of veterinary integrative biosciences and of medical humanities at Texas A&M University, where she coordinates the graduate program in science and technology journalism. Dr. Gastel is lead author of How to Write and Publish a Scientific Paper, 8th edition, and she has many other publications on writing, editing, and teaching in the sciences. She also has done extensive international work. She is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and she has received the John P. McGovern Science and Society Award from the scientific research society Sigma Xi.
DR. MARIA KOLIOU
Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental
Engineering, Texas A&M University
Dr. Koliou is an Assistant Professor at the Zachry Department of Civil and Environment Engineering at Texas A&M University. She joined the department after having been a Postdoctoral Fellow at the NIST-funded Center of Excellence for Risk-based Community Resilience Planning at Colorado State University. She received her Diploma (2008) in Civil Engineering from the University of Patras, Greece, while she holds Master’s (2010) and PhD (2014) degrees from the University at Buffalo. Her research interests span the fields of structural dynamics, earthquake engineering, and multi-hazard performance-based design for system functionality and community resilience. She has a diverse research portfolio with projects on the performance and functional recovery of wood and cross-laminated timber (CLT) structures as well as moldable and wave tunable materials for application in complex freeform structures. She is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) technical committees including the Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) Design of Wood Structures Committee, the SEI Disaster Resilience of Structures, Infrastructure & Communities Committee and the Engineering Mechanics Institute Objective Resilience Committee. She also served as the co-chair of the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute’s Younger Members committee during 2017-2019, while she currently serves as the chair for the SEI Design of Wood Structures and Wood Education Committees . Dr. Koliou received the 2018 Structural Engineering Institute’s Young Professional Scholarship. She is also an ASCE ExCEEd fellow since summer 2019.
DR. KARAN WATSON
Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering, Texas A&M University
Karan L. Watson, Ph.D., P.E., is currently Provost Emeritus and a Regents Senior Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, having joined the faculty at Texas A&M University in 1983 as an Assistant Professor. She served as the Co-Director of the Institute for Engineering Education and Innovation and is currently a distinguished fellow of this Institute. She has served in numerous administrative roles at Texas A&M University, including: provost and executive vice president, vice provost, dean of faculties and associate provost, interim VP for diversity, associate dean of Engineering, and program chair for interdisciplinary engineering. Dr. Watson is a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), the American Society for Engineering Education, and the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). Her awards and recognitions include the U.S. President's Award for Mentoring Minorities and Women in Science and Technology, the American Association for the Advancement of Science mentoring award, the IEEE International Undergraduate Teaching Medal, the American Society for Engineering Education Lifetime Achievement Award, and numerous faculty awards at Texas A&M University. She has served as President of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) and the President of the Education Society of IEEE.