Student Spotlight

  • Manisha has always been fascinated with science and curious about why things are the way they are. She became an MCB major because of this reason: "I think MCB encompasses the idea of getting to the root of things. The moment I heard Brad Mehrtens (MCB 150 instructor) speak so...
  • Ronell Esquivel is an MCB major that is also pursuing a Spanish and Chemistry minor. When he started at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign he was a biochemistry student. During sophomore year, Ronell took MCB 250: Molecular Genetics and became interested in MCB. He admits that he wasn’t...
  • Katrina's favorite subject in high school was Biology so naturally, she decided to pursue that field in college. As a pre-med student, when looking at the different biology programs that the University of Illinois offers, the MCB advanced courses where the most interesting to her, especially due to...
  • Bertha is an MCB peer advisor that knew from the beginning that biology was the path for her, especially to pursue her goal of becoming a physician. When she took her introductory biology course, MCB 150, she loved how passionate the professor was and during her time as an MCB major, she has...
  • Ritika has always been interested in biology which is why she decided to apply to the biology program at the University of Illinois, but once she took her introductory biology courses, she knew MCB was the major for her: "I loved the details we learned in MCB 150 and as I continued...
  • Danica Vendiola, an extraordinary MCB honors student, knew she wanted to major in MCB after seeing her sister's experience in the major: “With my mom being a nurse, my experiences volunteering at a hospital and seeing my sister’s journey to medical school, I knew I wanted to pursue MCB and...
  • In 2018, Cameron Schwing, an undergraduate student in IB, was awarded the Mildred Parizek Zukor Award. Cameron began research on bees as a high school student in Fisher, IL. After completing his A.S. in General Science at Parkland College in 2016, he entered UIUC at part of the Parkland Pathways...
  • Vivian Li is a junior who is double majoring in IB and psychology. In addition to her coursework, she has a diverse array of outside interests. She is an EMS Aide / EMT student with Illini Emergency Medical Services, a peer educator for Stress Management Peers at McKinley Health Center, and was an...
  • In 2018, Alex Riley, undergraduate student in IB, was awarded the Alice B. Hayes Research Support Award. Alex's research focuses on the molecular basis of partner quality in the legume-rhizobium mutualism. He is using metabolomic, genomic, and transcriptomic techniques to understand why some...
  • In 2018, Cecilia Prada, undergraduate student in IB, was awarded the Alice B. Hayes Research Support Award. Cecilia's research explores the relationship between soil nutrient availability and the diversity, composition and distribution of tree species in montane forests in western Panama, and its...
  • There’s a popular quote that says: “knowledge is useless without action”. Our very own MCB leader, Jennifer Rodriguez, is a prime example of this. Her dedication and hard work towards her experience at the University of Illinois is truly admirable. As an upcoming senior and pre-med...
  • Sally Feng worked in Alison Bell’s lab as an undergraduate research assistant and completed her own independent senior research project, eventually graduating with High Distinction in IB. Sally studied how maternal stress influences the ability of offspring to learn and to use social cues, in...
  • Cassie received the Undergraduate Research Experience and Knowledge Award (UREKA) from University College Dublin and headed to Ireland to work with Triassic-Jurassic pollen from East Greenland.  Here is her account of the trip: Since starting work in...
  • "As an undergrad at the University of Illinois, I spent the past four years learning a lot of things, but by doing my own research project I've been able to describe behaviors that no one else has before"