Congratulations UCI BioSci Class of 2020!

Time to celebrate YOU

Congratulations to our UCI School of Biological Sciences graduating students! Thank you for choosing BioSci to make your memories and enrich your future. You are the foundation of our School, and we are so excited to see our future biologists, doctors, pharmacists, and much more succeed!

We are so proud of all of you!

Zot Zot Zot!

Graduate Cap


Registration to submit your photo for the website is now closed. However, if you would still like your photo featured on BioSci social media during commencement, please use #UCIBioSci!

Tiffany Tran

Biological Sciences

“Looking back on my time at UCI, I’m appreciative of every opportunity presented to broaden my understanding of healthcare in a scientific and humanitarian perspective. Double majoring with political science was not the easiest, but nonetheless rewarding. I take this knowledge of biology and societal injustices with me as I work towards becoming a physician.

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I owe much of my academic and personal growth to my research PIs/professors (thank you for taking a chance on me, Dr. Beckmann, Dr. Lau, and Dr. Van Vranken), the organizations that have strengthened my passion for aiding the underserved (shout-out to By Any Means and the Free Clinic Project), the many lifelong friends/mentors, and last but certainly not least, my family. The UCI Class of 2020 is graduating in an unprecedented time of change; I look forward to the bright future and many accomplishments awaiting us Anteaters. Zot Zot Zot!!!”

Lilith Aguirre-Murray


I am so proud to have completed my degree at UCI! I plan on applying to medical school and I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for me!

Zot Zot Zot!

Manal Usmani

B.S. Biological Sciences

Pursuing this degree has challenged me, and I am proud to have grown in numerous ways over these four years. I couldn’t have done it without the unconditional support of my family, or the amazing people at UCI ranging from peers to professors and even staff members that always encouraged me to push my limits. This is a historic year to graduate, class of 2020 we survived it all 🙂

Adrian Vallejo

Biological Sciences

From my time at UCI, I am thankful for the opportunities to be involved with clinical research and many student organizations. My involvement with Global Medical Training (GMT) at UCI is the highlight of my college experience. I met my best friends in GMT and learned that I wanted to pursue medicine. The next step is med school. Zot zot!

Gloria Huynh

Exercise Science

My time in BioSci has truly allowed me to grow and be the best version of myself. I came in not knowing what I wanted to do in my career, but my experiences with mentoring first-years, being an LA and tutor, and doing research has shown me that outreach and research are things that I want to continue doing.

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Through these programs, I have met my best friends and people who I will continue to hold strong relationships with. I know that my experiences working with people, in conducting research, and in creating new projects and organizations will allow me to succeed in the path that life takes me. Hopefully, in the upcoming years you’ll see me as a practicing physician. But I could not have done this all on my own. So thank you to my wonderful professors Azizi, Aguilar-Roca, and Kadandale for having a positive impact on me. Thank you to the counselors and to BioSci Starbucks for helping me along the way. My time at UCI has shown me that it really does take a village to raise a child, and I hope to provide the same support to others.

Amber Peterson

Developmental and Cell Biology

I am most proud of my time as an undergraduate researcher! Deciding to join Dr. Cho’s developmental & cell biology lab was one of the greatest decisions I have made since coming to UCI. The opportunities and hands-on learning experience is truly unmatched!

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From my experience as an undergrad researcher, I was able to get a SURP fellowship, Excellence in Research, and a stronger appreciation for biology and research! Up next in my educational journey is med school! I will forever be proud to be an anteater! Zot zot!

I plan on celebrating my graduation with my family at Din Tai Fung!

Parinaz Esteghamat Tehrani

B.S. in General Biology

Hello Everyone,

My name is Parinaz Esteghamat and I am graduating with the Bachelor of Science in Biology. I am so proud to say that my four-years of undergrad at UCI was one of the biggest achievements in my life. As an immigrant student from Iran moving to the US in 2016, I have been so privileged to experience new academic and cultural environments.

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I am very grateful for all my friendships, connections I made with professors, and the guidance I received from my mentors through these four years.

With all the support I received, I will start my next journey to become a dentist at Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry Class of 2024. I am so excited for the next step as much as I was for my education at UCI because I believe that academics pave a pathway towards more professionalism, personal growth, and better future career opportunities.

I am going to celebrate my graduation from UCI and my acceptance to the dental school with my family, friends, and loved ones through a virtual watch party on June 12th (Honors Convocation Ceremony) and June 13th (commencement).

Let’s wrap this up with my favorite UCI BioSci memory:
BioSci Mentor Program meet and greets were the most enjoyable memory I have because the program allowed me to meet UCI alumni especially connecting me with the dentists. I got matched with Dr. Tom Vu through this program and he guided me a lot by sharing his experience in a dental field. I am so grateful that I could be a part of the UCI BioSci student body and received love and support from the faculty, staff, and mentors.

My last word of wisdom to you is to never be afraid to set your goals high enough to motivate you to achieve them; you only live once, so make your own life decisions to make you happy.

Zot! Zot! Zot!

Sanam Ahadi

Human Biology

Black Lives Matter.

Yangtao (Terrence) Lin

Biological Sciences

Graduating in 2020 is crazy! Despite the current situations, I am proud to say that I made it! After graduation, I plan to work in a biotech company for a year and study for the GRE exam for a Master’s program in Bioinformatics. My favorite UCI BioSci memory was having a free dinner, raffle games, and other fun activities with BioSci Alumni in the BioSci Mentor Program.

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It created a comfortable environment for us, which made networking with mentors more fun and enjoyable! Also, I got to match with those mentors who are working in a career path that I wish to pursue, which allowed me to get to know them more about their successful experience and potentially work with them!

lurui Niu


Congratulations to the class of 2020. We made it!!! Many thanks to my family who raised me up and give me the chance to study abroad at UCI. In the past four years, I am glad I have met a lot of friends, TAs, staff, and professors. I have gained so much experience and those will be an unforgettable memory in my future life. THANKS, UCI
Peace & Love!

Sadaf Esteaneh

Human Biology Bachelors of Science

One of my favorite UCI BioSci memories is attending my Human Biology classes. I loved how the class was interactive and engaging. We would conduct medical case studies that were similar to real-life scenarios. This course was enlightening as it showed me how to apply my knowledge not only to exams but to situations in the outside world.

Jiana Machhor

Biological Sciences, B.S.

I wanted to take the time to thank UCI and the School of Biological Sciences for the best 4 years of my life! This is a special shout-out to my family, friends, and mentors who never stopped believing in me, even when I had the most trouble believing in myself.

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I’m incredibly proud of the communities that I’ve been involved in, both on the UCI main campus and at the UCI School of Medicine. These experiences have inspired me to do and be better, have shaped me into the person that I am today, and have inspired the goals that I have for the future; and for that, I am forever grateful! Next stop: medical school!

Jocelyne Altamirano

Biological Sciences

I am beyond proud of myself and my classmates for getting through this roller-coaster of a quarter. As bio students we are so used to having labs, study groups, and meeting with staff in person so this quarter was such a sudden change for us and we should all be proud of that. This time next year I hope to be applying to dental schools.

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I am going to take this gap year to invest in my community by engaging in more volunteer work and exploring the dental field as well. I plan to celebrate my graduation with family and friends who helped me get here. My favorite UCI BioSci memory has been being able to take classes I was genuinely interested such as Dr. Bowler’s fresh water lab, Dr. German’s human nutrition class, and Dr. Aguilar-Roca’s physiology lab. I have also enjoyed meeting other bio students who have such great aspirations for their future. WE DID IT!!!

Reggie Quinones

Biological Sciences

I am proud to say that I graduated UCI obtaining a B.S in Biological Sciences. Although, there were times I wanted to give up and switch out, I remembered why I became a Bio major in the first place. I remembered that obtaining this degree would open so many opportunities both in the health and non-health related careers.

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The many paths that I could take with my degree would help me become one step closer to reaching my goals. The hardships and determination to get through the past four years has made me develop a good work ethic that I can apply to my future career. While I am sad that we are unable to have a traditional commencement, I will be celebrating my graduation with my family at home. Despite not walking the stage, I am glad to say that my hard-work has finally paid off and I am ready to see what’s next in my journey.

Anja Johnson


I can’t believe my UCI BioSci journey is over, but I’m excited for my next journey to begin! I will be taking two gap years so I can take the MCAT, gain more experience in the medical field, and apply to Medical school. Maybe I’ll be back at UCI in a few years!

Daniel Nasr

B.S. in Biological Sciences

*I am most proud of my clinical research projects completed with EMRAP and the “work hard, play hard” lifestyle I created for myself at UCI. Being as productive as possible, enjoying myself, and living life to the fullest all at the same time.
*I hope to be applying to Medical School this same time next year.

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*My next step is receiving an MD from any medical school within the US.
*I plan on spending as much time with my friends and family as I can before I go back into studying for the MCAT.
*My favorite UCI BioSci memory would be having to save 6 seats in my Bio Sci 99 class for all of my friends. I was able to recognize at that moment that UCI has helped build my network not only on a professional level but a social one as well.

Serinee Tran

B.S. in Biological Sciences

Today, I graduate with honors in BioSci as a first-generation college student. I am most proud of my personal growth and development during these past 4 years at UCI as this was not an easy journey. Thank you to my professors for challenging and encouraging me to think on my own.

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Thank you to my family for providing unconditional support along the way. Thank you to my classmates, who I call my friends today, for the late-night study sessions, coffee runs, and for showing me that I was not alone. Although we did not get closure from a traditional commencement, I am grateful for the memories I’ve shared with some incredible people I’ve met here at UCI, and most importantly, the fact that we are going through the COVID-19 pandemic together and still being able to celebrate this milestone. This day not only marks the end but also a new beginning in the next chapter of our lives.

Jesus Mariscal Campos

Biological Sciences

I am the last of four siblings all born in Mexico. First generation college students from parents whom did not get the same opportunity to attain higher education. I would’ve never imagined my life turning out the way it has been.

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With a publication in UCI’s undergraduate research magazine under the School of Medicine, 5 straight quarters with Dean’s list (dedicated to Kobe and his 5 rings), and life long friends I have made. I am shooting for the stars and becoming part of the 4% of Mexican-American doctors who practice in the U.S. I live a humble life and realize that my presence on Earth would be maximized by serving the under-served communities I grew up in. I recognize the struggles that we all endure, but I will be there to help you get back on your feet, back to full health, that way you may continue to move forward. Together we can create a better tomorrow. #SiSePuede!

Ashley Guevara

Bachelors of Science- Biological Sciences

As a first generation Latina student at UCI, I am proud of being the first in my family to go and graduate from a university! On top of this, during my last quarter at UCI I started working full time at a hospital and was pulled to work in the frontlines against covid-19 while still going to school full time. I did it!! I hope to be a cardio thoracic surgical PA in the future and will be working on that goal after my time here at UCI.

Arash Khangholi

Bachelor’s Degree in Biological Sciences

My first year as a bio major was rough, to say the least, but with enough confidence and persistence, I found my place. I have been blessed with an amazing support network of friends and loved ones. I hope to celebrate graduation with the same network of people alongside proper precautions and distancing measures. This time next year I would hope to be able to walk outside and high-five a random stranger without a care in the world.

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I hope to continue my educational journey in medical school so if anyone needs a prescription…go to a different doctor since UCI reminded me that integrity is key. My favorite UCI BioSci memory was when I walked into my physics classroom dressed like the mysterious SwagMan for no reason. Mamba Out.

Alyssa Avilez


These past four years here at UCI have provided me with many opportunities and friends that I will forever cherish. I am proud to be graduating from UCI because here I have found my passion, neuroscience, after spending two years in my neurocritical care lab, thanks to Dr. Akbari and Afsheen. Next, I look forward to attending becoming an EMT and then attending medical school.

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I’m excited for my future and will always be thankful to UCI for all it has taught me. Even though commencement is virtual this year, I am still looking forward to turning my tassel surrounded by my family and friends.

Brian Damavandi

Human Biology and Psychology

I am proud of all the accomplishments I have achieved at UCI, especially this milestone, GRADUATION, I would like to thank my friends, family, professors, and mentors for all the support throughout my time at UCI. I was honored and humbled to have the opportunity to serve as the Biological Sciences Senator during the 2018-2019 academic year.

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I had the pleasure to meet with fellow Biological Sciences peers and discuss various issues students are concerned as well as Bio Sci Professional Staff, Dean and Associate Dean. By this time next year, I hope to be applying to graduate/health professional schools. This year has been interesting and has been quite the rollercoaster with many unusual circumstances faced, such as adapting to remote classes and having a virtual commencement, I plan to celebrate my virtual graduation at home by watching with my friends and family. My favorite UCI memory would be during the summer orientation, SPOP, where I met my first friends at UCI and had the opportunity to be acquainted with the beautiful UCI campus that I would call home for the next four years. Furthermore, move-in weekend during my freshmen year, was unforgettable I vividly remember that day, pushing the carts full of essentials from the car to my dorm in Mesa Court- Mariposa and cannot believe it was four short years ago. I enjoyed my first Welcome Week- where I took part in the Guinness World Record for the Largest Game of Dodgeball and had the opportunity to join various clubs which I am still a part of today. My favorite UCI BioSci memory would have to be “Donuts with the Dean” and “BSC Winter Soiree” where I had the opportunity to chat with fellow Biological Science students, Professors, and other professionals in the field of biology and medicine. I will always remember and cherish all the experiences and memories I have made at UCI. Congratulations to the Class of 2020, WE DID IT! Remember once an anteater, always an anteater! Zot! Zot! Zot!

Brooke Burton

B.S. Biological Sciences

Hi, my name is Brooke and I am a UCI Bio Sci ’20 graduate! Looking back on my journey, I am most proud of honestly just graduating. I am a first generation student and my whole life I always had my parents to help me through things. But, being the only one to have gone to college, this is one of the first things I have had to figure out on my own.

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That being said, I think UCI Bio Sci has really prepared me for the next step in my educational journey – medical school!

Although times are tough right now, I plan to celebrate my graduation by spending time with my family and lots of food (shout out glycolysis)! My favorite UCI memory is honestly walking to and from class with my other bio sci friends – i hope i can walk with them sometime next year across that commencement stage.

Alicia Sherents

B.S in Human Biology

As I graduate, I am proud of myself for accomplishing this milestone that I will always cherish. Coming from an Armenian immigrant household, my family has taught me to always pursue the career path that is of most interest to me.

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Since the start of my freshman year, I immersed myself into the medical field by being involved in: a healthcare administrative internship at the hospital, research, as well as a clinical internship where I shadowed residents and observed bedside medical procedures. I am proud of the plethora of opportunities that were provided, because they did confirm the field that is the most dear to me. I am also proud of the friendships that I have formed, because it allowed me to broaden my medical inner circle of friends. I am grateful of all of the experiences that I have made at UCI, thank you!

Evelyn Dao

Bachelor of Science in Biology

My favorite UCI BioSci memory is when I studied abroad in Sussex, England for the physics study abroad program. Struggling with other students in another country really brings you closer to one another. I never felt a stronger sense of community.

Zainab Khan


Going to miss sipping overpriced coffee while chatting with my friends on the steps of on McGaugh Hall. Officially one degree hotter 😉