Eisele Group

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Principal Investigator

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Prof. Dorthe M. Eisele

Email: eisele(at)ccny.cuny.edu | CCNY Faculty Page |Office: Center for Discovery and Innovation (CDI), Room 4-370 Phone: 212-650-8361 Division of Science

Dr. Eisele was born and educated in Germany and grew up in Berlin. She studied Physics at the Technical University of Berlin, Germany. In 2009, she received her doctoral degree, Dr. rer. nat. (the German equivalent of Ph.D.) in Experimental Physics from the Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany, in close collaboration with Prof. David A. Vanden Bout (Chemistry Department of the University of Texas at Austin, USA).

From March 2011 till August 2014, she conducted her research as a Postdoctoral Associate at the Center for Excitonics of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the research groups of Prof. Moungi Bawendi and Prof. Keith Nelson. In 2011, she became a member of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and received the prestigious Feodor Lynen Award. She is very grateful to her Alexander-von-Humboldt mentors Robert Silbey (Chemistry Department, MIT, USA) and Andrei Tokmakoff (Chemistry Department, University of Chicago, USA).

In September 2014, she joined The City College of New York (CCNY) of The City University of New York (CUNY) as an Assistant Professor of Physical Chemistry. In summer 2015, she received access to her laboratories at CCNY’s Center for Discovery and Innovation.

In 2015, she received the CUNY Junior Faculty Research Award in Science and Engineering (J-FRASE), an award amongst the CUNY Colleges funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. In 2016, she was awarded the Felix Gross Award of the CUNY Academy for the Humanities and Sciences, an award for Assistant Professors amongst all CUNY Colleges in Humanities and Sciences. In 2017, she was awarded a research grant by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and became a member of the Solar Photochemistry Program, which is part of the DOE’s Basic Energy Sciences Office. In 2018, she received a Faculty Early Career Development Award of the National Science Foundation (NSF), which provides substantial support from the Macromolecular, Supramolecular and Nanochemistry Program of the NSF Division of Chemistry, enabling her to study bio-inspired, self-assembled nanomaterials to elucidate Nature’s secrets of efficient excitation energy transport.

Postdoctoral Researchers

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Nikunjkumar Visaveliya, Ph.D.

Dr. Nikunjkumar Visaveliya was born in Devkigalol, India. He earned his B.Sc. in Chemistry and M.Sc. in Organic Chemistry both at the Sardar Patel University, Gujarat, India. After completing his M.Sc., he moved to National Chemical Laboratory, Pune, India where he worked as a research project assistant under Dr. BLV Prasad on the synthesis of different bio-surfactants and their applications. He then joined Prof. J. Michael Koehler’s group at the Technical University of Ilmenau, Germany in order to obtain his PhD. In Prof. Koehler’s group, Nikunjkumar gained extensive expertise in state of the art microfluidic nanosynthesis. He applied these microfluidic techniques to synthesize different types of multi-functional nanoparticles (organic as well as inorganic) with a wide variation of parameters such as size, shape, assembly, and composition for different functional applications. During his PhD career, Nikunjkumar published 17 manuscripts in peer reviewed journals, of which he is first author of 11 publications. In November 2016, Dr. Visaveliya joined Prof. Eisele’s research group at the City College of New York as a postdoctoral researcher. His research interests concern nanomaterials for light-matter interactions. Specifically, he is interested in utilizing microfluidics for supramolecular self-assembly as well as for polymeric nanomaterials and novel nanocomposites for optical and biomedical applications. Nikunjkumar is passionate about pushing microfluidics forward to new frontiers.

Three Selected Publications:

  1. N. Visaveliya and J. M. Köhler; “Microfluidic Assisted Synthesis of Multipurpose Polymer Nanoassembly Particles for Fluorescence, LSPR, and SERS Activities”, Small, 11, 6435–6443 (2015) (Inside Cover Article).

  2. N. Visaveliya, S. Lenke and J. M. Köhler; “Composite Sensor Particles for Tuned SERS Sensing: Microfluidic Synthesis, Properties and Applications”, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 7 (20), 10742-10754 (2015).

  3. N. Visaveliya and J. M. Köhler; “Single-Step Microfluidic Synthesis of Various Non-Spherical Polymer Nanoparticles via in-Situ Assembling: Dominating Role of Polyelectrolytes Molecules”, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 6 (14), 11254-11264 (2014)


William P. Carbery, Ph.D.

Email: wpcarbery(at)gmail.com

Dr. William Carbery received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Boston University in the Spring of 2014. He was an undergraduate researcher in Professor Linda Doerrer’s lab, where he synthesized and characterized metallophilic platinum nanowires. Will pursued graduate research at New York University, working in Professor Daniel Turner’s lab. Leaving synthesis behind, Will became fully involved in the spectroscopy of ultrafast phenomena. He advanced and maintained the research laser in the Turner Lab with a particular focus in ultrabroadband two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy of molecular systems in the optical regime.

Selected Publications and Presentations:

1.     Carbery, W. P.; Pinto-Pacheco, B.; Buccella, D.; Turner, D. B. “Resolving the Fluorescence Quenching Mechanism of an Oxazine Dye Using Ultrabroadband Two-Dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy”. J. Phys. Chem. A. 2019, (123), 5072-5080.

2.     Carbery, W. P.; Verma, A.; Turner, D. B. “Spin-Orbit Coupling Drives Femtosecond Nonadiabatic Dynamics in a Transition Metal Compound”. J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 2017, (8), 1315-1322.

3.     Paper presented at the 20th International Conference on Ultrafast Phenomena, July 17-22, 2016, Santa Fe, NM. J. Brazard, L. A. Bizimana, W. P. Carbery, T. Gellen, and D. B. Turner, “Coherent Wavepacket Evolution Analysis Reveals a Conical Intersection in a Highly Fluorescent Molecule”. OSA Technical Digest (online) (Optical Society of America, 2016), paper UTh3B.1.


Graduate Students

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Kara Ng

Email: kng.kara(at)gmail.com

Kara grew up in Brooklyn, NY. In February 2015, she received her bachelor’s degree from The City College of New York with a major in environmental chemistry and received the Benjamin Harrow Memorial Award for undergraduate research. Kara also received The Division of Science Fellowship to work with the U.S. Geological Survey at the New Jersey Water Science Center, where she analyzed the occurrence and distribution of contaminants along the New Jersey coastal sediments.

Kara’s interest in interdisciplinary fields of chemistry and environmental science led her to pursue graduate research. In September 2015, Kara entered the Ph.D. program in Chemistry at the City University of New York (CUNY) under the supervision of Prof. Dӧrthe Eisele, Dr. rer.nat.

Kara’s research interest is in the fundamental science of energy transfer in self-assembled nanomaterials (i.e., supramolecular aggregates, hybrid organic-inorganic nanomaterials) with the goal of guiding rational design of innovative next-generation solar cells. Her dissertation is focused on understanding the subtle structure-property relationships of energy transfer mechanisms using a combination of spectroscopic and ultra-high resolution microscopic techniques.

Selected Publications and Presentations:

  1. Meuhlethaler, C., Ng, K., Gueissaz, L., Leona, M., Lombardi, J.R., Raman and SERS characterization of solvent dyes: An example of shoe polish analysis. Dyes and Pigments 137: 539-552 (2017).

  2. Ng, K., Belh, S., Chowdury, A., Yehya, N., Patel, M., Huffman, G., Eisele, D.M. Near-field scanning optical microscopy investigations of individual supramolecular light-harvesting nanotubes.

  3. Poster session presented at the 252nd American Chemical Society National Meeting & Exposition, August 21-25, 2016, Philadelphia, PA. Ng, K., Szabo, Z., Reilly, P.A., Barringer, J.L., and Smalling, K.L., An assessment of mercury in estuarine sediment and tissue in Southern New Jersey using public domain data. Marine Pollution Bulletin 107: 22-35 (2016).

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Pooja Gaikwad

Email: poojavg136(at)gmail.com

Pooja grew up in Mumbai, India. She completed a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Mumbai with a major in Chemistry. She was the recipient of a Dr. Pai Scholarship for Excellence in her Bachelor’s degree. Her drive to imbibe knowledge beyond her major led to her receiving a State Scholarship for Graduate Excellence Examination which recognizes students for their proficiency in physical sciences and social sciences. Pooja earned her Master of Science degree from the University of Mumbai where her research project involved Synthesis and Studies of complexes of Rare Earth Elements with Organic Ligands. During this time, she also represented the University of Mumbai on various platforms such as television media, seminars, and talks. Pooja has extensive experience training students for the SAT and her students are currently enrolled in undergraduate degree programs in universities such as Tufts University and the University of Birmingham. Pooja’s intent to be trained as a convergent and divergent thinker coupled with interests in scientific questions led her to pursue doctoral research. Pooja is now enrolled for her doctoral program at the City University of New York under the mentorship of Dr. Eisele and has been part of The Eisele Research Group since April 2018. She is passionate about understanding the self-assembly processes and will be focusing on the self-assembly of peptides – light-harvesting materials.


  • Chalk and Talk, Unviersity of Mubai, 2013

  • Dr. Pai Scholarship, D.G. Ruparel College, University of Mumbai, 2011

  • State Scholarship for Graduate Excellence Examination, 2011

 undergraduate Students


Saad Ahmed

Email: saahmed101997(at)gmail.com

Saad grew up in Queens, NYC. Saad began his undergraduate career at the City College of New York in September 2015 pursuing a major in Biochemistry. Saad joined the Eisele group in April 2016. In Fall of 2015, Saad joined the CCNY chapter of Engineers without Borders and contributed to the adoption of their new project in Nicaragua. In Spring 2016, Saad was elected Event Coordinator of the CCNY chapter of Engineers without Borders.         

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Giancarlo Zirpolo

Email: gzzunie(at)gmail.com

Giancarlo was born and raised in Bronx, New York.  In 2015, he started his undergraduate studies at the Grove School of Engineering at The City College of New York as a chemical engineering major. In January 2018, he joined the Eisele research group, where he assists the researchers with lab work.     



 Joe McManus

Email: josephrmcmanus(at)gmail.com

Joe McManus is pursuing a B.E. in Chemical Engineering at the City College of New York. He grew up in Denver, Colorado and received a B.S. from the School of Communication at Northwestern University. He previously worked in politics and public policy with the Roosevelt Institute and Obama for America. His concentration is chemical solutions for energy storage. He is excited to help the Eisele Group study self-assembling light-harvesting nanotubes.


Joy Kim

Email: Jtk1802(at)gmail.com

Although she has spent the majority of her life in Fairfax, Virginia, Joy still has a soft spot for past homes in Kentucky and South Korea. She attends the Gallatin School at New York University in the class of 2021, where she plans to form a concentration based on nanotechnology and neuroethics. Joy joined the Eisele Group in early 2018 and works under the kind tutelage of Kara Ng.



Matthew Padunan

Email: padunanmatthew(at)gmail.com

Matthew was raised in Queens, New York. An undergraduate student at City College of New York, he intends to pursue a combined B.S./M.S. degree in Chemistry. In April 2018, he joined the Eisele group and is currently working with Dr. Nikunj.


Firdaus Khatoon

Email: firdaus722(at)gmail.com

Firdaus was born in India and moved to the United States in 2008. She is currently an undergraduate engineering student at the City College of New York. She joined the Eisele group in June 2018 and has recently been assigned her own project to discover the bio-functionalization of metal nanoparticles. With a background in DNA Barcoding she hopes to find a consensus between two disciplines.



Noah Hovde

Email: noahallenhovde(at)gmail.com

Noah A. Hovde born and raised in Piermont, NY began his undergraduate education at Manhattan College as a Chemical Engineering Major. He transferred after just one semester to the City College of New York and switched his major to Physics. Hovde intends to complete his B.S. in Physics and, upon graduating, pursue a Ph.D. in a related field to Applied Physics. Here at the Eisele group, he assists Dr. Leishman with research using the femtosecond laser system in the spectroscopy and photonics laboratory.


Nermin Mostafa

Email: nermin.mos(at)gmail.com

Nermin was born and raised in Alexandria, Egypt. Currently, she is a senior undergraduate student pursuing a Biology major and Chemistry minor at The City College of New York (CCNY). She is always interested in discovering and getting valuable experience in the field of science. Apart from her academics, she tutors General Chemistry at CCNY.

Nermin is pleased that she will be extending and summarizing her knowledge in a field relative to her study at the Eisele Group. In November 2018, Nermin joined the Eisele Group. She is now working with graduate student, Pooja Gaikwad.



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Danielle R. Monroe B.B.A.

Email: drmonroe07(at)gmail.com

In January 2019, Danielle has been accepted to the ERG as an undergraduate researcher. She was born in Brooklyn, NY. Previously, she studied at Baruch College to obtain a B.B.A. in Accountancy with a minor concentration in Communications. Danielle has worked as an accountant and project manager in the alternative asset management industry for over a decade, at international banks, hedge funds, and private equity funds. Danielle dedicates her spare time to homeless outreach with The Bowery Mission and Don’t Walk By in New York City. She also has mentored young girls in various mentorship groups in Brooklyn, NY and served as a leader with the kid’s ministry at her church. Currently, Danielle is further exploring her passion for numbers and ‘how things work’ in her pursuit of a second degree in applied mathematics and engineering. She aims to develop solutions to issues dear to her, such as awareness of educational and financial resources in economically challenged communities, and research for renewable energy resources.


Karisma McCoy


In November 2019, Karisma has been accepted in the ERG as an undergraduate researcher. Karisma was born in New York and raised in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. She began her undergraduate career at New York Institute of Technology, majoring in computer science. Upon discovering her passion for chemistry, she transferred to the rigorous science program at The City College of New York. As an undergraduate student at CCNY, she aspires to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry, and to apply for a Ph.D in a chemistry‐related field. After completing her studies, Karisma plans to do research alongside passionate scientists in different countries. In the ERG, she is working in the team of the doctoral researcher Kara Ng. Partaking in research has helped her develop skills such as working in a lab setting, utilizing advanced tools, and applying her knowledge to practice.


Kelvin Leo

Email: kleo000(at)citymail.cuny.edu

Kelvin was born in New York, grew up in Malaysia. He came back to continue his education at Grove School of Engineering at The City College of New York. He is majoring in Chemical Engineering, particularly interested in enhancing smart drug delivery and solar energy harvesting. He aspires to live by the quote “Be part of something bigger than yourself.”  He joined Dr Eisele’s team to be a part of the development of fundamental understanding of nanoparticles which is the foundation for the fields that he is going to be focusing on in the future as a chemical engineer. By being a part of the fundamental research of nanoparticles, he aims to have an intensive understanding in nanoparticles as well as be a part of this elite team in filling the void in current nanotechnology for the greater good.


Janel J. Rivera

Email: janelriveracancel(at)gmail.com

Janel was born in Orlando, Florida and raised in Ponce, Puerto Rico.  In 2017, she started her undergraduate studies at the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico in Ponce as a Chemistry major, adding Biomedical Sciences as a second major in 2018. There she started research in quantum dots synthesis under the guidance of Dr. Luis Alamo Nole.  In June 2019, she joined the Eisele research group as an intern from the IDEALS CREST REU program.


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Michael Villaizan

Email: villaizan.mv(at)gmail.com

Michael, our Management Consultant, is responsible for developing and maintaining relationships between the research group and private investors. Leveraging his professional experience in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, he combines research, finance, and communication to cultivate strong, transparent, and sustainable partnerships.

Michael completed his Bachelor's degree in Applied Mathematics with a minor in Economics at The City College of New York. Michael developed a strong sense of community involvement after serving as a volunteer tutor and Executive Board Member for The City Tutors, a non-profit organization focused on the professional development of students for life-after-college. He was the fellowship recipient of 2016 Partners for Change Fellowship for civic involvement and community outreach.


Bavly Soliman


Bavly Soliman is a Film Director, Cinematographer and Pharmacist who grew up in Alexandria, Egypt. In 2014, he received his Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Science (BSPS) from Alexandria University, Egypt. Bavly is one of the Co-founders of Arwah For Films Inc. In Egypt, he worked as a Film Director and Assistant Director for shorts films, documentaries, commercials. Bavly also participated at major festivals such as the Cannes Film Festival 2016. In 2017, he moved to NYC and is currently a graduate student of the Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema – Directing Program, Brooklyn College at CUNY. In 2019, Bavly became a member the Eisele Group where his project is focused on educational outreach to promote science beyond academia.


Altynay Narmanova

Born and raised in Kazakhstan, Altynay is a native Russian and Kazakh speaker. Her interest in science lead to complete her B.S. degree in Biology in KAIST, a university in South Korea. She joined the lab in summer 2018 to volunteer educating the public about the importance of fundamental research, which is an outreach endeavor of the lab. 



Yiran Ye


Yiran was born in China. She received her bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Nanjing Audit University, in June 2017. She completed her master’s degree of Accountancy in University of Rochester after 17-months of studies. During her master studies, she was devoted to becoming a CPA which provided solid foundation for her accounting study. Now she works as an accountant in Brooklyn and she joined Professor Eisele’s research group as a volunteer for accounting in Sep 2019. She works on the budget for research funds and encumbrances. In this work, she is intended to track the usage of the funds to ensure there is enough cash flow for all the research projects. She hopes to help Eisele Group run smoothly.


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Michael Chin

Email: michael.gg(at)gmail.com

Michael Chin was born and raised in New York City, where he graduated from The City College of New York with a Bachelors in Political Science.

Michael joined CCNY’s The City Tutors, which is a community organization focused on training volunteer tutors who support talented students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Partners of The City Tutors are educational programs from all over New York. Currently, The City Tutors trains their tutors to support students from partner organizations from across four of the five boroughs of New York City. In general, with their organization, The City Tutors create a unique opportunity to support both the students and their volunteer tutors, the latter of which receive hands-on career development opportunities through the diverse tutoring programs. The City Tutors are based at CCNY’s Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership.

Currently, Michael serves as the Educational Assistant as well as the Tutor & Training Coordinator of The City Tutors.

In the Summer of 2017, The Eisele Group had the chance to begin a fruitful and long-term collaboration with The City Tutors. Michael became an important part of the Eisele Group’s educational outreach projects and at the beginning of 2018, the Eisele Group was able to strengthen the successful collaboration with The City Tutors by providing partial funding for Michael’s position.


The City Tutors

Alexia Aguilar (aga310(at)nyu.edu): I graduated from NYU Steinhardt in the Spring of 2017 with a B.S. in Nutrition and Food Studies and a minor in Studio Art. After graduation, I completed a Postbaccalaureate Program at NYU. I am currently taking a gap year while I apply to medical school!

Philip Meade (pmeade.citytutors(at)gmail.com): I’m a microbiology PhD student at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and I’m interested in pursuing a career in education. In college, I was a TA in my Organic Chemistry class.

Lauren St. Peter (laurenstpeter(at)hotmail.com): I graduated from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in 2018 with a B.S. in Chemistry and a minor in Public Health. After graduation, I spent a year teaching elementary school English in Taiwan through the Fulbright Foundation. Now, I am building up my application for MD/Ph.D school. 

Stacy Portillo (sportil000(at)citymail.cuny.edu): Stacy grew up in Long Island and moved to Harlem to start school at CCNY in 2018. She is a sophomore who is pursuing a degree in biology. She is excited for the opportunity to tutor this semester, and hopes to create a fun learning experience for the students.

 High School Students


Ashni was born and raised in Marlboro, New Jersey, where she is
currently a rising senior at Manalapan High School’s Science and
Engineering Magnet Program. At school, she is the president of
Manalapan’s Technology Student Association, TED-ED club, and tutors
students after school. Currently, she’s a high school researcher in
the Eisele Group and hopes to learn while working under Dr. Eisele and
her team. In her free time, Ashni is a cadet at Morganville’s First
and And Rescue Squad and loves to help out in her community.

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Keylin Escobar

Email: kescobar1410(at)bths.edu

Keylin was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, where she is currently a rising junior at Brooklyn Technical High School. Since being introduced to physics in her freshman year, Keylin has decided to pursue a career in physics. Currently, she’s a high school student researcher in the Eisele Group and mentored by our doctoral researcher Pooja Gaikwad. For her research project, Keylin is learning to synthesize porphyrin nanotubes, self-assembled under different solution conditions. Her 2018 summer research project is kindly supported by CCNY’s NSF-CREST Center for Interface Design and Engineered Assembly of Low-dimensional Systems (IDEALS),.

Whenever she’s not in the lab, Keylin loves to spend her time reading or playing the violin.


Postdoctoral Researchers

Joseph Brisendine
Postdoctoral Researcher [ Theoretical Modeling ] (2017-2018)
Currently at Rockefeller University

Graduate Students

Dhwanit R. Dave
Graduate Student [ Chemistry ], (2018-2018)
Currently doing lab-rotation

Sarah Belh
Graduate Student [Chemistry] (2014-2017) 
Currently at Brooklyn College

High School Students

Salimata Konate
Research Outreach Assistant (Summer 2017) 
Currently at Potsdam State University of New York

Keylin Escobar
Research intern (Summer 2018)


Jin Xu

Janel J. Rivera


Abe Whitmeyer
Undergraduate Researcher [Physics] (2016-2017) Currently at Tiburzi Group at CCNY

Arafat Chowdhury
Undergraduate Researcher [Biochemistry] (2014-2017) 

Grayson (Gray) Huffman
Undergraduate Researcher [Applied Math] (2015-2016)
Currently at Northeastern University (Graduate Student)

Mohammad Molla
Undergraduate Researcher [Mechanical Engineering] (2014-2016)
Currently doing Quality Engineer at Northrop Grumman

Dimitri Foster
Undergraduate Researcher [Chemical Engineering] (2015-2016)  
Currently Office Candidate for the US Navy

Jaqueline Ollness
Undergraduate Outreach [Bio Engineering] (Summer 2017) 
Currently at University of California, San Diego

Undergraduate Students

Reid Vero
Undergraduate Outreach [Biology] (Summer 2017)  
Currently at Macaulay Honors College, City College

Minal Patel
Undergraduate Researcher [Chemical Engineering] (2016-2017)

Karen Navarro
Undergraduate Outreach [Neuroscience] (Summer 2017)
Currently at The City College of New York

Syed Shahabuddin
Undergraduate Outreach [Biomedical Engineering] (Summer 2017)
Currently at The City College of New York

Wayne Seaton
Undergraduate Outreach [Psychology] (Summer 2017)   
Currently at The City College of New York

Feyi Adekunle
Undergraduate Researcher (Summer 2018)  
Currently at Howard University

Nelson Tobar
Undergraduate Researcher [Chemistry] (2016-2017)  

Zhenghao (Kevin) Zhu
Undergraduate Researcher [Computer Science] (2017 – 2019)
Currently at Stony Brook University

Niki Brisnovali
Undergraduate Researcher [Biology] (2017-2018)
Currently at the city college of new york

Bernabe Villegas
Undergraduate Researcher [Communications] (2018-2019)
Currently at the city college of new york

Nico Yehya 
Undergraduate Researcher [Physics] (2014-2018)
Currently at Johns Hopkins University, Ph.D. Candidate

Dominik Doktor
Undergraduate Researcher [Physics] (2017 – 2018)
Currently CEO at Doktor Labs, LLC

Michael Ross
Undergraduate Researcher 
Currently at Lehman College, M.S. Ed.

Dean Lahana 
Undergraduate Researcher [Chemistry] (2016-2017) 
Currently at Hohenstein Group at CCNY

The City Tutors

Dolonchapa Chakraborty, PhD

Jennifer Shin