Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
700 N. San Vicente Blvd.
Pacific Design Center, Suite G557
West Hollywood, CA 90069
I am a first-generation Latino scholar from a low-income immigrant family, born and raised in Fresno, California. In my situation, there was a shortage of money and knowledge on how to become a college graduate, aspirations about college seemed unrealistic. This limited exposure to the concept of higher education could have prevented me from pursuing a college education. Fortunately, numerous teachers, coaches, and mentors encouraged me to consider college and explained the impact a college education could have on my life. The notion that my life could change for the better inspired me to become the first college graduate in my family. To achieve this, I had to not only compete with other college applicants but overcome the circumstances I inherited. My experiences, though difficult, inspired me to become a professor who conducts novel research, emboldens future scholars, and creates a truly inclusive environment that will nurture all students.
I earned three degrees from Michigan State University: (1) Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with a minor in Mathematics, (2) Master of Science in Computer Science, and (3) Dual PhD in Computer Science and Ecology, Evolution, & Behavior. Throughout my college career, I became involved with activities and programs dedicated to STEM outreach for those students who historically come from underrepresented groups. I also mentored in different capacities, such as a research mentor, a graduate advisor for the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, and a student mentor. Please see CV for more details about these experiences. It was important for me to both thrive academically and give back to the community, as without mentorship, I would not be where I am today.
I am currently a postdoctoral scientist with the Department of Computational Biomedicine at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. My work here involves combing evolutionary algorithm and machine learning techniques to generate effective and robust models for medical predictions. Broadly, my research intrests focus on (1) using evolutionary algorithms as an optimization tool for complex problems where traditional techniques may struggle, (2) engineering diagnostic problems that reveal strengths and weaknesses of evolutionary algorithms, and (3) developing new techniques/algorithms that increase the performance and robustness of evolutionary algorithms.