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Biochemistry and Molecular Biotechnology Blog


June 2024 BMB Monthly Newsletter

From the Outreach Office

Happy Pride Month to all!!! Pride is meant to be a celebration of those with LGBTQIA+ identities (check out the Wellness Section of the newsletter to learn more). Pride’s history formally started in 1969 after the Stonewall Riots, but LGBTQIA+ individuals have been shaping our world for thousands of years (at least). We encourage you to take some time this month to learn about LGBTQIA+ contributions to science – you can start by checking out the resources in this very newsletter!

cartoon silhouettes of two people holding each other

Best Buddies. 1990. © Keith Haring.

Welcome to all new hires

Kelly Gay - Post Doc in the Bolon Lab

Claire Kelley - Undergraduate Intern in the Schiffer Lab

Fiona Morris - Undergraduate Intern in the Schiffer Lab

Maire Murphy - Undergraduate Intern in the Rhind Lab

Luke Zhang - Undergraduate Intern in the Chen Xu Lab

Serhil Zheka - Undergraduate Intern in the Thompson Lab

Zoey Wilcox - Undergraduate Intern in the Munson Lab

Graham Latino - Research Associate I in the Thyme Lab

FREE events In & Around Worcester

Any time – volunteer with One Leaf Corp (run by our own Webb Camille in the Xu Lab) by emailing

June 2, 2-4pm – Pizza making at the Rose Room (NOT FREE - $10)

June 5, 5-8pm – Beers & Peers – great networking opportunity for biotech / biomed / pharma in MA (Haley has attended and can confirm)

June 8, 10am-12pm – Pooch portraits in the park (RECOMMENDED DONATION WET OR DRY DOG OR CAT FOOD)

June 8, 1-3pm – Hot sauce and barbeque tasting

June 10, 6-9pm – Retro video game night @ True West Brewing Co (AGE RESTRICTION – 21+)

June 11-15 – Cardboard World – family- and kid-friendly

June 12, 7-9pm – Comunidad creativa

June 13, 4-7pm - ABI-LAB Block Party

June 15, 10am-4pm – Mill Village annual art festival

June 19, 5-9pm – Buy Black market Juneteenth celebration

June 30, 4:30-8:30pm – Assembly of food trucks

Looking for information about the Pride Parade? Stay tuned! It is scheduled for September 7.

Worcester Pride Events (more to come over the summer – consider signing up for their email list)

June 10, 6-8pm – LGBT asylum task force community dinner

June 17, 6:30-8pm – Gender roundtable discussion

June 18, 6:30-8:30 – Worcester County Pride pottery paint night

June 20, 6-10pm – Movie on the Common – “Barbie”

June 22, 6-8pm – Summer BBQ

June 26, 6-8pm – Queer AF 2024 Kickoff

From the UMass Chan OWB

June has events including yoga and seminars about things like the psychology of addiction! Check out their calendar at this link.

Department News

Dr. Celia Schiffer was elected to the National Academy of Sciences!!! This is a huge honor and we are so proud of Dr. Schiffer! We celebrated her election at a department party on May 22nd.

Judy Huang from the Schiffer Lab volunteered as a speaker for the UMass Chan Postdoctoral Association’s Science Café this month! She talked about her research into influenza virus structure. Check out the recording here on Youtube!

New PhD’s in the house!! Last month we celebrated Dr. Janneke Icso from the Thompson Lab and Adam Hedger from the Watts and Schiffer Labs. Congratulations, Dr. Icso and Dr. Hedger!!!

At the end of April, Dr. Brian Kelch was honored with the Education Service Award from the Morningside Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. Learn more about Dr. Kelch’s service in this blog post!

two people posing for the camera, one is holding a certificate

Also at the end of April, we celebrated DNA Day by sharing a blog post about Dr. Brian Kelch’s research! Specifically, we highlighted the work of now-Dr. Jacob Landeck – check it out!

Blog Post & Social Media

Feature of the Month


#newscience alert

Schematic of a tooth with chemicals on the surface
scientific diagram of a lipid bilayer in two different organisms
A scientific diagram of a lipid particle and a lipid bilayer
Schematics of a human silhouette  next to a clump of cells and a nanovaccine

#preprint alert



EAP: 1-800-322-5327 or

Emergency numbers

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 988

MA Behavioral Health Help Line (can also text this number!): 833-773-2445

SAMHSA National Helpline (in English and Spanish!): 1-800-662-4357

Worcester Community HealthLink: 1-866-549-2142

Job Openings - Share with your Network!

Miss a previous newsletter? They’re all on the BMB website!

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