Alumni Members

Steffen Schuster



Steffen obtained his diploma degree in Genetics from the University of Erlangen, Germany in 2009. He then joined the group of Prof. F. Tacchini-Cottier at the University of Lausanne as a Ph.D. student. His research focused on the innate immune response to Leishmania infection. Besides scientific research he is also interested in event management. BSNL gave him the opportunity to work with a team of international members in organizing and promoting events that support the career development of other life science students as well as his own. In his free time Steffen likes to play football and golf as well as travelling.

Zoltán Spiró


Zoltán received his MSc degree in Molecular Biology in Budapest, he then decided to move to Lausanne in 2010. He did his Ph.D. under Prof. Gonczy at EPFL, where he investigated cell division processes using C. elegans embryos. Apart from the professional side, he has always been interested in science communication. Along the same lines he was the leader of the Students’ Research Association in his home university in Budapest. Now in the framework of BSNL, he was very glad to continue organizing science-related events. Besides, Zoltán is also an enthusiastic cook and an obsessed globetrotter.

Eduardo Martin Moraud


Eduardo is originally from Madrid (Spain), but studied engineering in Paris and then obtained his MSc Degree in Artificial Intelligence from Edinburgh University, UK. He was  a Ph.D. Candidate at ETH Zurich and a visiting student at the EPFL Centre for Neuroprosthetics. He worked on the development of neuroprosthesis control systems for rehabilitation after paralysing spinal cord injury. His interests lied in the applications of robotics for neuro-rehabilitation and related biomedical applications. He particularly enjoys working at the intersection of all the disciplines involved in such projects which includes neuroscientists, biologists and medical doctors – a richness that he very much appreciates in the framework of BSNL. He hopes to use this platform to form fruitful links between academic and professional environments, even from different backgrounds!

Devika Ashok


Devika is from India and studied in Italy, UK and Dubai before coming to Lausanne. She is pursued her PhD on the immune reaction to parasitic infections with Prof Hans Acha-Orbea at the University of Lausanne. She is looking to apply her academic training to other interdisciplinary opportunities in the future. Having worked with a similar team as BSNL in organizing other events such as the Life Science symposium in 2011, she is looking forward to galvanizing efforts towards securing a bright career for life science graduates such as herself. Devika is also an avid linguist who enjoys travelling and capturing experiences with her camera when possible.

Kid Kohl


After accomplishing her Master degree in ‘Medical Biology’ at the University of Lausanne (CH) in 2010, Kid decided to stay in the field of infection biology and neglected diseases. Her PhD project was a collaboration between Prof. Nicolas Fasel and Prof. Andreas Mayer at the University of Lausanne, and consists in determining the importance of polyphosphate and its synthesising enzyme in Leishmania parasites. Enjoying teamwork and event organisation, she intended to increase the accessibility of potential career opportunities in the domain of life science with BSNL. In her free time Kid likes to do sport, travelling and socialising.

Juan Camilo Paredes

Juan Camilo Paredes

Juan comes from Colombia. After finishing HS in a French school in Cali and willing for an international adventure, Juan took a sabbatical year in Atlanta, USA. Passionate by languages and culture, he moved then to Europe to start university. He studied Molecular and Cellular Biology at the ENS in Lyon France. After his master internship at the EPFL, he decided to continue on the same project for his PhD. He worked in Innate Immunity and was trying to understand how higher organisms detect beneficial or detrimental microbes. After 4 years in Academia, he is looking for a career with a strong social interaction and short-term tangible results. Passionate by challenging intellectual and social experiences, he wanted to improve his organizational skills and make both himself and students profit of his quest through BSNL. In his free time, Juan loves the outdoor activities where he enjoys adventure and contact with nature.

Theresia I. Yiallourou


Theresia grew up in Athens (Greece). She graduated from the department of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering at the University of Cyprus and worked a doctoral student at Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne at the laboratory of Hemodynamics and Cardiovascular Technology under both the supervision of Prof. Nikolaos Stergiopulos and Dr. Bryn Martin. Her research was focused on modeling and measurement of the cerebrospinal fluid dynamics related to craniospinal disorders that are difficult to diagnose and treat, such as Chiari I malformation. In the framework of the BSNL, she was very interested in building a communication bridge between the research in Biomedical Engineering field and the industry and help all those young scientists to enrich their motivation for a life science career.

Yan Agalarov



Yan graduated from Lomonosov Moscow State University in 2008 with an MSc in biochemistry (1st). While studying at University, he gained operational experience working in the telecom and software industries. After graduation, Yan started his career-path as a clinical research assistant at “GlaxoSmithKline”. He then decided to continue scientific education and moved to Lausanne where he joined a group of Prof. Petrova at UNIL as a PhD student. His area of research is in lymphangiogenesis and cancer. Yan believes that challenging real-life problems can be solved by talented, highly motivated people with strong academic background. In his free time, Yan enjoys doing different sports including rollerblading, snowboarding, and wakeboarding. He has been running a basketball group in Lausanne for last 2 years and organizes various sport activities for his friends such as surf safaris. Yan is a polymathic person, always open to new experiences and sincerely believes that life is a search.

Fatima Taki

After getting a master in Animal Biology from the Lebanese University-Beirut,Fatima Fatima moved to Joseph Fourier University-France, where she accomplished a Bio- Nanotechnology master with a Predoc scholarship. Then she moved to Fribourg in 2011 where she did an internship in biochemistry and genetics. In 2012, she started her PhD project in the Institute of Research in Ophthalmology (IRO) where she’s tackling the molecular causes of a genetic retinal degenerative disease.

Fatima is an ambitious lively person, dedicated to discovering and applying science, she believes that we should always learn to develop and never cease to ask others and engage ourselves. Engaged in various sport activities like running, biking, mountain hiking and yoga, she has joined certain non-profit organizations that ameliorate people’s lives and their environment.

Through BSNL, she has got a niche where she communicates with a nicely coordinated and dynamic team to build projects and innovate ideas that will help students throughout their path; a place to apply and refine her organizational, motivational, communication and innovation skills.

Samira Asgari

Samira got her masters in ‘medical biotechnology’ from University of Tehran,samira Iran in 2011. She then decided to come to Switzerland for her PhD and as changing country was not enough she decided to spice things up even more by changing from experimental biology to computational biology! Her PhD project focuses on human genomics of viral respiratory infections. Samira loves reading and travelling. She also enjoys teamwork and the process of brainstorming that comes along when motivated, creative people gather to build new things or generate new ideas. As a result, since joining EPFL Samira has been actively involved in a few clubs and communities on campus. With BSNL Samira hopes to be able to increase awareness about non-academic career paths for biologists.

Elena Menietti

Elena studied Molecular Biotechnology in Turin, Italy, where she graduatedElena in 2010 with a thesis on colorectal cancer stem cells. She is graduate student in the PhD program in Cancer and Immunology at University of Lausanne since 2011, in the lab of P. Dotto, and she focuses on the stromal compartment of skin squamous cell carcinoma. She believes that the key to find new cures is the crosstalk between clinicians, researchers and industry, and she would like to enhance this crosstalk. BSNL is a great opportunity to create a good network, which could help her reach her goal and is also a stimulating environment to learn how to organize events and mediate the work of different people. In her free time, Elena enjoys reading, doing sports, travelling and acting.

Jonathan Sobel

After finishing his Master degree in ‘Proteomics and Bioinformatics’ at the University Johnathanof Geneva in 2011 on endometriosis biomarkers, Jonathan decided to go in the field of computational biology. His PhD project is part of the CycliX project founded by the SystemsX initiative. He is working in the Computational Systems biology lab at EPFL under the supervision of Prof. Felix Naef.  He is working on chromatin accessibility in the circadian context in mouse liver, using next generation sequencing approaches. Enjoying teamwork he is president of the Swiss group of students of the international society of computational biology (ISCB-RSG Switzerland)  and he intends to increase the accessibility of potential career opportunities in the domain of life science with BSNL. He likes martial arts, guitar playing and beers.

Roman Bulushev

Former Event manager


Roman was born in the biggest Siberian city – Novosibirsk in a family of
scientists. He obtained his Maters degree in Novosibirsk State University (NSU) in Molecular Biology. However, his scientific curiosity always lied on the interface of biology and nanotechnology. For his PhD project Roman was excited in the new possibility of label-free and ultra fast sequencing of DNA with nanopores and joined the group of nanoscale biology at EPFL. Roman is an excellent team player, with ability to learn fast and aptitude to generate of innovative ideas. One of his ideas raised interest in Merck Serono that hired Roman as a consultant to gain insight in the possibility of commercialization of the idea. One of the main Roman’s obsession is sports. Being 14-years old he won the Russian championship in underwater swimming among his age. To date he has tried many different sports and keep trying new ones. In free time Roman likes to travel, eat well and watch movies.

The main objective of being a part of BSNL for Roman is to understand what kind of career he wants to choose after graduation. This goal can be fulfilled by networking with creative and ambitious students as well as representatives of Industrial and Academic sectors.  Moreover, accordingly to Roman, being a member of the BSNL team dramatically develops presentation, communication and organization skills.

Vitaly Chicherov

Former Webmaster

Vitaly is from Russia. He studied mathematics and physics at MIPT in DolgoprudnyVitaly near Moscow. He became interested in human neuroscience, and in particular, in the human visual system, brain-computer interfaces, EEG, and fMRI. He then went to EPFL to do his PhD (with Prof. Michael Herzog) which he finished in April, 2015. Currently he is a postdoctoral researcher at EPFL studying neural correlates of visual crowding, i.e., visual processing in cluttered scenes. He wants to expand his career by learning how to manage projects and organize events. This is why he decided to join the BSNL. He is happy to help students in their career lives and increase their chances of finding a job. In his leisure time, he likes to travel, run, and row, as well as watch movies and learn languages.

Vasco Campos


Vasco is originally from Lisbon, Portugal and came to Switzerland to study Biology. He finished his Masters in Molecular Evolution at the University of Basel and came to EPFL in 2012 initially to work as a technician at the Laboratory of Stem Cell Bioengineering. In 2014 he helped establishing a new laboratory, where he also started his PhD in identifying novel interactions between the hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) and bone marrow adipocytes. If you don’t hear from him for a while, he is most probably lost in a remote place with no Internet connection. He also appreciates live music, cinema and cooking. In October 2015 he joined the BSNL in order to broaden his scientific network as well as to contribute to organizing academia/industry partnerships. Being part of such a diverse and motivated team if of course a nice side effect!

Premnath Rajakannu


Premnath studied biotechnology in Madras, India and went to Germany premfor his masters in Biomedical sciences and engineering. After spending 3 years in Germany, where he worked at Roche Pharma for one year, he decided to pursue his PhD in the field of Cancer Biology. He moved to Lausanne in January 2011 and has been working on Brain cancer research ever since. He is passionate about music and cooking. He is an enthusiast when it comes to making new contacts and constructive networking. It fuels his motivation both socially and professionally to be among dynamic people who love to bring new inputs and make changes in day to day lives. Through BSNL, he is looking to foster his skills and abilities to shape a strong personality and also to give himself an opportunity to help fellow researchers in the field of Life Sciences to come in contact with the professional world.

Qiuwen Lai

Former BSNL treasurer

Qiuwen Lai

Qiuwen obtained her Bachelor of Science at the University of Western Australia. After her bachelor, she worked as an Imaging Scientist at Merck Sharp Dohme, Singapore for 2 years before she decided to pursue her postgraduate studies in Switzerland. She completed her Masters in Life Sciences and Technologies at EPFL in 2013. Currently, she is working as a PhD student at the University of Lausanne where she focus on studying cholesterol metabolism using genetic modified mouse model. She joined BSNL on May 2015 aiming to expand her scientific network and also to gain hands-on experiences with events organization and management skills. As a highly organized and result-driven person, Qiuwen is looking forward to participate actively in the organization. Outside of science, Qiuwen enjoys cooking, travelling and playing piano.

Gabriela Eccogabriella

Former Secretary

Gabriela wanted to be an astronaut, almost became a journalist, but turned out to be a biologist. After 1 year in Journalism College, she decided to pursue her fascination for genetics and changed majors to Biology. She received her Bachelor Degree in Biology from the Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil, in 2011 (cum laude). Her passion for excellence and other cultures brought Gabriela to Switzerland. Since July 2011, she is a PhD student at Prof. Trono’s group at EPFL. She works with epigenetics and gene regulation in stem cells, and the role of “junk DNA” in mammalian genomes. She’s a determined person, passionate for learning and innovation. She sees BSNL as an opportunity to broaden her networks, to work with motivated people towards common goals, and to help students pursue their career aspirations. She loves traveling, cooking, and playing guitar.

Leonor RibLeonor Rib3

Leonor was born near Barcelona (Spain) where she graduated in Computer sciences engineering and later became very interested in molecular biology. At that time she became bioinformatician at the Unit of genomics of complex diseases in the Hospital Sant Pau (Barcelona) and did a master in Bioinformatics for Health sciences at the University Pompeu Fabra. Her passion for molecular biology didn’t end there and she decided to move to Switzerland to pursue her doctoral studies in the Integrated Experimental and Computational Biology doctoral program at the University of Lausanne, where she is currently investigating the coordinated transcriptional programs occurring during mammalian cell proliferation.

Leonor is also a person who is passionate about creativity and artistic activities, such as music as she has taken part of university classic and gospel choirs. Moreover, she enjoys very much organizing science related activities, like at the BioScience Network Lausanne, where she is glad to be part of a dynamic and highly motivated team.