Advisory Committee

Frank Bayliss, PhD     Email
Professor; Director of the Student Enrichment Opportunities Office
San Francisco State University


Frank Bayliss is Professor of Biology and Director of the Student Enrichment Opportunities (SEO) Office at San Francisco State University (SFSU). Dr. Bayliss has served as the Program Director of numerous NSF, NIH, DoD, USDA, USDEd, Beckman Foundation and Genentech Foundation training grants focused on inclusion of underrepresented minority, low-income and disabled students in preparation for PhD degree programs and careers in science. Dr. Bayliss continues as Director of SEO and is also currently the Director for Diversity in the NSF Science & Technology Center based at UCSF in partnership with SFSU, UC Berkeley, IBM, Stanford U and the Exploratorium. The “Center for Cellular Construction” is focused on the education and training of a diverse workforce to embrace engineering cells.

Ellen Fung, PhD, RD     Email
Co-Director, Summer Student Research Program
Principle Investigator
UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland

Dr. Fung received her doctorate degree in Nutritional Science from the University of California, Berkeley. She has a long-standing curiosity in the impact of nutrition on children with chronic disease. Particular areas of concentration have included the assessment of bone health and trace mineral metabolism (zinc, iron), dietary intake, growth and body composition in a variety of chronic pediatric disorders including thalassemia, sickle cell disease, cerebral palsy, Rett syndrome, mucopolysaccaridosis and vitamin D deficiency rickets. She has over 70 peer reviewed publications and has received research funding from the National Institutes of Health, the US Department of Agriculture, the National Dairy Council, the American Academy for Cerebral Palsy & Developmental Medicine and the Cooley’s Anemia Foundation. She is currently the Director of the Bone Density Clinic at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland (BCHO). She is the Program Director of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), LIGHT-a-SPARK grant, as well as the PD for the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation High school to College programs at CHORI, both with similar goals to the NIH program. Dr. Fung has been an active research mentor at BCHO since 2000 and the Co-Director of the CHORI summer research program since 2014.

Gino Galvez, PhD     Email
Summer Student Program External Evaluator
Assistant Professor
California State University, Long Beach

For the past decade, Dr. Galvez has conducted program evaluation research for several health, education, STEM training and mentoring programs for underrepresented minority (URM) groups. Dr. Galvez has served as the lead program evaluator of a five-year USDE-funded Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) / STEM program. The project aimed to increase the number and success of Hispanic students in STEM through peer-mentoring, summer and winter research programs, and faculty development. In addition, he developed the program evaluation plan for the 27.2M NIH BUILD grant awarded to California State University Long Beach (CSULB). The overall goal of this five-year program is to strengthen and develop a sustainable pipeline for advanced research degrees for URM students. Furthermore, he is also an investigator on a NSF-funded project that examines perceptions of culture, science career interest and motivation among freshmen URM STEM students. Since 2012, Dr. Galvez has evaluated the CHORI Summer Research Program. Dr. Galvez earned a Ph.D. in Applied Psychology and M.S. from Portland State University and is a faculty member in the Industrial-Psychology program at CSULB.

Jocelyn Garrick, MD     Email
Executive Director
Alameda Health Care Pathway Partnership (ACHPP)

Dr. Garrick is the Executive Director of the Alameda Health Care Pathway Partnership (ACHPP), a program designed to be a supportive network that provides ethnically diverse youth of Alameda County with academic, social and professional development to build a successful career in all areas of the health industry. Dr. Garrick graduated from UC Berkeley, attended USC for medical school and completed her residency at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. She is a board-certified Emergency Medicine physician at Alameda County Medical Center/Highland Hospital in Oakland, CA.

Caroline Hastings, MD     Email
Director, Fellowship Program and
Co-Chief, Hematology/Oncology Division
UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland

Dr. Hastings is the Director of the Fellowship Program at the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland. She is also a senior clinician-scientist, educator and Co-Chief of the Hematology/Oncology Division. On a national level, she is a leader in the specialty’s society, the American Board of Pediatric Hematology Oncology (ASPHO) and serves as the Treasurer /Secretary, and an elected trustee to the board. Dr. Hastings was the co-founder of the multidisciplinary Pediatric Neuro-Oncology Program (2004). She is board certified in hematology/oncology and has several academic interests, including high risk and relapsed extramedullary acute lymphoblastic leukemia, and a rare metabolic storage disease, Niemann-Pick Type C disease.

David Killilea, PhD     Email
Enrichment Director – Summer Student Research Program
Director, Elemental Analysis Facility
Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute

Dr. Killilea is a Staff Scientist in the Nutrition & Metabolism Center at Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute (CHORI) and Specialist at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Dr. Killilea is a nutritional biochemist with a particular interest in the mineral micronutrients, working with renowned National Academy of Science members Dr. Bruce Ames and Dr. Janet King. Funding for Dr. Killilea’s research has come from the National Institute of Health, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and HarvestPlus, resulting in more than 40 peer-reviewed manuscripts, 90 conference abstracts, and several cited interviews including the Wall Street Journal & New York Times Magazine on nutrition and good health. Dr. Killilea is provides regular lectures in nutrition and pre-medical courses held at UC San Francisco, City College of San Francisco, and California State University. Dr. Killilea has been the research supervisor for over 20 undergraduate students from UC Berkeley, Mills College, and other colleges, including 4 in the Honors program, and serves as a doctoral committee member for 2 graduate students at Washington State University and the University of Melbourne. For the last 10 years, Dr. Killilea has been a volunteer instructor for the Community in the Classroom Program for the Berkeley and Oakland Unified School District. And for the last 12 years, Dr. Killilea has been a mentor and lecturer for the CHORI Summer Student Program.

John Matsui, PhD     Email
Director, Co-Founder
Biology Scholars Program
Assistant Dean, Biological Sciences
University of California, Berkeley

Dr. Matsui is the Assistant Dean of Biological Sciences at the University of California, Berkeley, is the Founder and Director of the Biology Scholars Program at UCB and the 2013 recipient of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring. He has continued to run and direct the Biology Scholars Program at UC Berkeley since it’s inception, and is a well-known expert in STEM, writer and speaker on undergraduate research training programs.

Kala Mehta, DSc, MPH       Email
Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics
School of Medicine, UCSF
Site Co-Investigator, STIMULUS


Kala is an Associate Adjunct Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of California, San Francisco. Kala teaches clinical research methods to undergraduates, medical students, residents, fellows, and international faculty. She teaches in traditional ‘brick and mortar’ and online educational formats. She is also faculty of the SF BUILD, a pathway program to promote diversity in science. In this program she works with undergraduate students, teaches them clinical research skills, and then works with them to find research placements in labs at UCSF and San Francisco State University.

In terms of research, Kala focuses on vulnerable populations in both US  domestic and international contexts. Kala received her DSc. in Epidemiology from the Erasmus University Medical School in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and has obtained post-graduate specialization in epidemiology and clinical research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the University of California, San Francisco.


Vas Narayanaswami, PhD     Email
Associate Scientist
Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute
California State University Long Beach

Dr. Narayanaswami is the previous CHORI SSRP Co-Director (2005-2016). She has an active research program at California State University Long Beach (CSULB), and runs the MARC (Maximizing Access to Research Careers) NIH funded program for Minority students. She has a joint appointment at CHORI and a tenured Associate Professor at CSULB, a Hispanic Serving Institute (HSI). Dr. Narayanaswami’s research focus is lipid and lipoprotein metabolism, with direct medical relevance in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease. She serves on the AHA scientific review committee and is currently the Chair of the AHA ATVB Women’s Leadership Committee and member of the ATVB Diversity Committee.

Seti Sidharta, PhD     Email
Director, Center for Science Excellence Program
Contra Costa College

Dr. Sidharta has over 24 years of experience teaching chemistry at Contra Costa College (CCC) and over eleven years of being the Director of the Center for Science Excellence program (CSE). As CSE Director, Seti provides vision and leadership for a diverse, energetic, and innovative community of STEM faculty mentors, staff, and students at CCC.  Her responsibilities span from providing year-round program management and comprehensive student services to bringing a host of federal funding to the college including grants from the National Science Foundation, Department of Education, Department of Agriculture, and MESA UCOP.  She also builds synergistic partnerships with UC Berkeley, UC Davis, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, Berkeley Lawrence Hall of Science, USDA, Children Hospital Oakland Research Institute (CHORI), UCSF General Hospital, National Action Council for Minority in Engineering (NACME), and industries in order to develop internship opportunities for STEM students at the college. Besides her work and participating in the NIH R25 Advisory Committee, she serves as a Board Member in the Girl's Inc of West Contra Costa County and the Richmond Groundwork.

Aaron Streets, PhD     Email 
Assistant Professor, BioEngineering
Director, Bioengineering Scholars Program
UC Berkeley
Site Co-I STIMULUS Grant

Dr. Streets is an Assistant Professor of BioEngineering at UC Berkeley, a Chan Zuckerberg Biohub investigator, and Core faculty within the Center for Computational Biology and Biophysics. He is also Director of the Bioengineering Scholars Program focused on supporting underrepresented students at CAL in the Department of Bioengineering. He is also the Site Co-Investigator for the SSRP NIH grant entitled STIMULUS. Dr. Streets lab is interested in applying lessons from mathematics, physics, and engineering, to invent tools that help us dissect and quantify complex biological systems. Their goal is to uncover laws that govern the interactions of molecules inside the cell and the interactions between cells in a tissue or organism, by making precision measurements on single cells. In pursuit of this goal, they exploit three core technologies; microfluidics, microscopy, and genomics.

Maria Garcia, MD, MPH, MAS     Email
Assistant Professor, Department of General Internal Medicine
UC San Francisco

As a clinician investigator, Dr. Garcia focuses on co-morbid mental health and chronic diseases and their disproportionate impact on vulnerable and marginalized populations. As an Assistant Professor in the Division of General Internal Medicine, she conducts research on mental health integration in primary care, with a focus on racially, ethnically and linguistically diverse populations. Dr. Garcia completed residency training in Internal Medicine at UCSF, in the San Francisco General Hospital Primary Care Program, and subsequently the UCSF Primary Care Research Fellowship. During her fellowship, she developed an interest in improving mental health service delivery for individuals with limited English proficiency. Dr. Garcia has researched the unique challenges that patients with co-morbid mental health and chronic diseases face and focused on implementation work in mental health integration and improvement of service delivery for populations with language barriers.