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NIH

The Johns Hopkins University/National Human Genome Research Institute Genetic Counseling Training Program

Meet the Students

Class of 2019
Katherine Anderson

Katherine Anderson

Katherine Anderson graduated from the Honors Program at Miami University in 2014 with a B.A. in zoology, speech communication and environmental science. She was most recently an educator at the Cosley Zoo in Wheaton, Illinois, and previously worked at Disney World as an Animal Behavior intern. Katherine has volunteered as a group facilitator for Growth from Grief, a program for children mourning the loss of a loved one. As an undergraduate research assistant, Katherine worked on research using voles as a model for evolutionary biology and behavioral neuroscience.


Alexa Geltzeiler

Alexa Geltzeiler

Alexa Geltzeiler will graduate in May from New York University (NYU) with a bachelor's degree in psychology. She is currently working on her senior thesis on the effects of self-esteem upon the interpretation of supportive messages in romantic relationships. Alexa worked as a helpline operator at the National Eating Disorders Association from 2014 to 2015. She is also assisting NYU Professor Eric Brenner on a paper on a laboratory exercise examining polymorphisms at the phenylthiocarbamide (PTC) locus. Alexa studied abroad in London in 2014.


Yingyue (Annie) Li

Yingyue (Annie) Li

Yingyue (Annie) Li was born and raised in Cangzhou, China. She graduated from Hebei University in 2010 where she majored in Biotechnology and minored in International Trade and Economics. She initially envisioned herself as a biomedical scientist, and enrolled in the graduate program of Biochemistry at the University of Iowa. The training equipped her with a deep understanding of how genetic abnormalities contribute to carcinogenesis, however, she realized that her true passion is to translate the latest discoveries in human genetics to patient care. She graduated with a Masters in Biochemistry in 2012 and then worked as a research assistant at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics (UIHC), while volunteering at Family and Internal Medicine at UIHC and the Crisis Center of Johnson County. Annie has completed a prenatal rotation at the Greater Baltimore Medical Center and also rotated with the Genetics and Rare Disease Information Center. After spending some time at home in China, she spent her summer in a cancer rotation at Inova Fairfax Hospital.


Chenery Lowe

Chenery Lowe

Chenery Lowe graduated from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio in 2014 with a B.A. in French Area Studies. She also minored in Chemistry and Humanities. Before enrolling in the training program, Chenery worked as a primary and middle school teaching assistant in Dax, France. She is currently volunteering as an intern at in the Genetics Department of the UCSF Hereditary GI Clinic Cancer Risk Program. While at Kenyon, Chenery was a competing member and officer of the equestrian team. She also put those skills to use as a dismounted education coordinator at Redwood Hills Pony Club.


Ahna Neustadt

Ahna Neustadt

Ahna Neustadt grew up in Newbury Park, California. She graduated in 2014 from the University of California, San Diego, with a B.S. in Biochemistry and Cell Biology. As an undergraduate and Amgen Scholar at UCSD, Ahna worked on a cancer immunotherapy nanoparticle vaccine research project at Genelux and the Moores Cancer Center. She also cofounded the first UCSD undergraduate interdisciplinary research journal, called Equilibrium, which emphasizes the importance of ethics in research. Following graduation, Ahna began shadowing genetic counselors and working as an academic specialist and after-school program coordinator at Maple Elementary School. She also served as an intern with the BreakThrough Student Assistance Program, which assists middle school and high school students and their families with navigating the local school system. Ahnais excited to pursue her interests of cancer genetics, teaching, patient care, and public health policy during her training in the field of genetic counseling. Ahna enjoys singing, cooking, and swimming.


Class of 2020
Hannah Campbell

Hannah Campbell

Hannah Campbell received her Bachelors in Cell and Molecular biology with a minor in English Literature from Connecticut College. During her time there, she worked with Prof. Deborah Eastman researching genetic regulation of notch signaling during neuronal development. Outside of class, she enjoyed performing with and acting as musical director of an a cappella group. After graduating with honors, she went on to work for the clinical research office at Weill Cornell Medical College. There, she was a study coordinator for clinical trials of novel Lymphoma treatments. She also worked in patient recruitment for the Lymphoma Epidemiology of Outcomes (LEO) study, a longitudinal study evaluating the quality of life of patients during and after their cancer treatment. In her spare time, she volunteered with the St. Francis Xavier Soup Kitchen, where she trained volunteers in preparation for serving over 1,500 meals every Sunday to its guests.


Laynie Dratch

Laynie Dratch

Laynie Dratch is from just outside of Philadelphia, PA. She graduated from Colgate University with a B.A. in neuroscience and psychology in 2017. As an undergraduate, Laynie was a student representative and research assistant for the Department of Neuroscience and Psychology. She spent her summers as a research intern at the Penn Frontotemporal Degeneration (FTD) Center, where she worked on neuroimaging studies and was first introduced to genetic counseling. Laynie volunteered in a number of different ways while at Colgate, such as coaching for Let's Get Ready, which provides college preparation and SAT tutoring to underserved students, serving as a tour guide for the Office of Admission, participating on the executive board of Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society, volunteering as part of The Network, which is a club dedicated to raising awareness around issues of sexual assault, and more. Laynie is Zumba fitness instructor and has enjoyed teaching while in Baltimore.


Alexis Heidlebaugh

Alexis Heidlebaugh

Alexis Heidlebaugh grew up in the small city of York, PA. She graduated from Philadelphia University (now Jefferson University) in 2013 with a BS in Pre-Medical Studies and a concentration in Genetics. While in undergrad, Alexis completed molecular biology research, worked as a peer tutor and lab assistant, and participated in various academic, honors, and advocacy organizations. After graduation, she worked as a middle school teaching assistant, a caregiver for the elderly and individuals with disabilities, and volunteered as a companion at a children's grief and loss center. Before entering grad school, Alexis worked as a post-bac IRTA research fellow within the Social and Behavioral Research Branch at NHGRI and program coordinator for the JHU/NHGRI genetic counseling training program. During her two years at NHGRI, she also volunteered for a local crisis and suicide hotline. Alexis has always had an interest in working with individuals facing adversity in the health setting and is excited to pursue this through a career in genetic counseling. 


Diana Phan

Diana Phan

Diana Phan hails from San Diego, California. She attended UC Santa Barbara where she was a Regents Scholarship recipient and studied molecular biology, graduating with Honors. As an undergraduate, she contributed to research on autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease as well as in Education. As a Regents Scholar, she helped organize her university's annual TEDxUCSB conferences. Prior to her matriculation at our program, she taught high school math and chemistry and volunteered as an advocate for survivors of domestic and sexual violence. She currently serves as an executive board member for Student Assembly at Johns Hopkins SPH. Thus far, Diana has gained clinical experience in many settings with diverse patients: Genetics and Rare Diseases Information Center, Mercy Clinic Maternal & Fetal Medicine, Walter Reed Military Medical Center, Kennedy Krieger Institute, and Johns Hopkins Maternal-Fetal Medicine & Fetal Therapy. Her long-term research goal is to contribute to further development of genetics service outcome measures so that they better accommodate patient populations underrepresented in genetic counseling research.


Class of 2021
Liesl Broadbridge

Lisel Broadbridge

Liesl Broadbridge was born and raised in Madison, Wisconsin. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2016 with a B.S. in Biochemistry and a minor in Graphic Design. While at UW-Madison, Liesl worked as an undergraduate research assistant, volunteered at the Children's Hospital, served as co-director of UW's peer tutor organization, and tutored organic chemistry. Following graduation she moved to Washington, D.C. to begin a research fellowship through the National Human Genome Research Institute in Dr. Paul Liu's lab studying Acute Myeloid Leukemia and other hematopoietic malignancies. In addition to lab work at the NIH, Liesl spent time shadowing genetic counselors, attending conferences, and generally learning as much as possible about the Genetic Counseling profession! Since moving to DC, Liesl has found community connections by volunteering as a grief counselor for a family support group in Prince George's County. Outside of school and work, Liesl has taught competitive dance in both Wisconsin and DC for the last 7 years and continues to take classes herself as often as possible!


Amelia Mulford

Amanda Mulford

Amelia Mulford is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area. She graduated from Lewis & Clark College in 2014 with a B.A. in Psychology and Hispanic Studies, after studying abroad for a semester in Valparaíso, Chile. As a senior in college, she interned with a pediatric genetic counselor at Oregon Health & Science University and developed an interest in late-onset genetic diseases. Amelia previously worked in a behavioral neuroscience lab, examining the effects of apoE genotype and environmental factors on brain structure and function in a mouse model. She was most recently a program coordinator at the health advocacy non-profit Genetic Alliance in Washington, DC, where she concentrated on maternal-child health and newborn screening educational initiatives. Amelia has volunteered with the Ronald McDonald House and with PRS CrisisLink's CareRing program, providing social support and referral services to at-risk adults. Amelia enjoys cooking, hiking, swimming, and singing in local choirs.


Stephanie Riley

Stephanie Riley

Stephanie Riley graduated from Vanderbilt University in 2016 with a B.A. in Psychology and Child Development and a minor in Biological Sciences. At Vanderbilt, she worked in Dr. Bruce Compas's lab doing research on stress, coping, and communication in families with kids with cancer. She spent her summers working as a one-on-one companion for children with disabilities in park district camps and volunteering at a Serious Fun Network camp for children with serious and life-threatening illnesses. Since graduating, Stephanie has spent the past 2 years working at GeneDx as a genetic counseling assistant on their Clinical Genomics team and as a member of the XomeXpress (rapid WES) team. In her free time, Stephanie loves to play board games, watch reality TV, read, and quote The Office.


Caralynn Wilczewski

Caralynn Wilczewski

Caralynn Wilczewski received her B.S. with Honors in Biology from Loyola University Chicago in 2013. During college, she worked in patient care at a hospital and participated in undergraduate research. She continued her education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she received a PhD in Genetics and Molecular Biology in 2018. Her research in Frank Conlon's lab uncovered a novel role for a chromatin remodeling complex regulating skeletal and smooth muscle type genes in the developing heart. Caralynn received numerous fellowships and awards in support of her research. While in Chapel Hill, Caralynn volunteered with the Adapted Recreation and Inclusion program teaching swimming lessons and facilitating social interactions for individuals with intellectual and physical disabilities. She also worked as a hotline advocate providing crisis counseling for a domestic violence agency. In her spare time, Caralynn engages in public science outreach, using 3D-printed models of congenital heart disease to share her passion for science and genetics. 

Last Updated: February 4, 2019