Graduate Affiliates

Hey TD! We are the TD Grad Affiliates and we’re excited to meet you! We’re a group of graduate and professional students who are interested in working with, giving back to, and learning from the TD undergrad community. Our main function within the college is mentoring seniors on thesis presentations for Mellon Forums. We’re a great resource for students in both social and academic contexts. Feel free to ask us about grad school life, the process of applying to grad programs, New Haven life outside of Yale College, life after college, the “real world,” or anything really! We’re a growing program and we’re all really friendly, so feel free to say hi if you see us around the courtyard.


Head Graduate Affiliate

Xinyi Chen

Hi TD! I’m Xinyi and I’m a 4th year physics PhD student. I study cosmology, specifically the large-scale structure of the Universe and dark energy, using both computer simulations and survey observations. I’m from Hangzhou, a beautiful city in China, and I went to University of Michigan for undergrad. Outside physics, I like to read, do calligraphy, play the piano and write screenplays. I also enjoy learning all kinds of new things. If you need advice for your senior thesis and Mellon Forum, or want to know what grad school is like, or just want to chat, feel free to contact me! I look forward to meeting, helping and working with you!

E-mail: xinyi.chen@yale.edu 

Graduate Affiliates 

Matthew Blake

I am a third-year M.Div. candidate from the farmlands of central New Jersey. I am primarily interested in questions related to cross-cultural theology. How do different religions offer guiding principles for what constitutes a wholesome existence? How do different traditions conceive of the spiritual and psychological factors that hinder human flourishing? I am particularly interested in how Buddhism and Christianity converge and diverge in their respective imaginations of the good life. I also enjoy reading religious poetry and thinking about the role of form in communicating spiritual insight. After YDS, I would like to teach religious studies and lead artistic enrichment at a secondary school. I have experience working as a writing tutor, so reach out if you are looking for advice about structuring an essay or developing an excellent thesis statement.

 

Email: matthew.blake@yale.edu

 

Lucero Estrella

Hello everyone! My name is Lucero, and I am a third-year PhD student in American Studies. I am from Brownsville, a border town in South Texas, and I majored in Latina/o Studies & Japanese at the University of Texas at Austin before coming to Yale. My research interests include Mexican, US, and Japanese history, race and ethnicity, and Border studies. Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions about doing independent research, are interested in ethnic studies, or want to talk about graduate school. I look forward to meeting y’all!

 

E-mail: lucero.estrella@yale.edu

 

Sumita Ghosh

Hi everybody. I’m a fifth-year PhD student in Applied Physics and I use quantum information technology to look for dark matter. In undergrad I did materials science, electrical engineering, computer science, and robotics. I also like to make stuff - I’ve been sewing, knitting, crocheting, making jewelry, and doing origami for the past 18 years, and I have experience with a bunch of other types of crafts. Other than that, I’m queer, I rock climb (not well, but I love it), and I’m getting into gardening. If you think I can be of service to you in any way, please feel free to drop me an email! I look forward to meeting you.

 

Email: sumita.ghosh@yale.edu

 
Adi Kumar
 
 
Hey! I’m Adi, a second year PhD student in History. I’m originally from the Bay Area, and I’ve lived in Providence & DC since then. I’m interested in Asian American History, race, migration, and social movements. I love R&B and like to think I make good playlists. Please feel free to hit me up if you want to talk about grad school, music or anything really. 
 
 
 

Nicholas Huston

Hey everybody! I’m Nick, and I’m a 4th year PhD student in MB&B studying the structure and function of the long, viral genomes of single-strand RNA viruses. I’m originally from New Jersey, was a student-athlete (swimming) right around the corner at Wesleyan, and after graduation moved to Boston where I worked full-time as a researcher at an academic hospital and then a biotech start-up. I’m happy to talk with anybody about the trials and tribulations I encountered on my circuitous route back to grad school. Please feel free to reach out, and I’m looking forward to getting to work with you all!

 

E-mail: nicholas.huston@yale.edu

 

Juliana Lawrence

Hello! My name is Juliana, and I am a fifth year MD student from California. Before Yale, I studied Biochemistry and Global Politics at California State University, Los Angeles. I am currently pursuing a Master’s in Global Affairs at Tsinghua University as a Schwarzman Scholar. I am interested in global health and health disparities, and my hobbies include reading and writing (especially sci-fi and fantasy), trying new recipes, and backpacking / hiking. If you have any questions or just want to talk, feel free to get in touch! I’m excited to meet all of you.

 

E-mail: juliana.lawrence@yale.edu

Jonathan Marquez

Hello, I’m a TD alum who graduated in 2013. I am originally from Spring, Texas. I recently completed a PhD in Genetics and I am now finishing up medical school as part of the MD/PhD program. My research has largely revolved around the developmental biology and genetics of birth defects. I am planning to pursue further training in Pediatrics after completing medical school. My interests include biomedical innovation, health reform, soccer, and turtles. I look forward to meeting yall.

 

Email: jonathan.marquez@yale.edu

Dylan O’Connell

Hey everyone! I’m Dylan, and I’m starting my fifth year of a Ph.D in Statistics & Data Science. I love to row, run, and read. I’m always happy to chat, be it about navigating grad school admissions, statistics in academia & industry, your day, or anything at all. I love being part of the broader TD community, and I can’t wait to meet all of you.

 

E-mail: dylan.oconnell@yale.edu

 

Lauren Patrick

Hi everyone! My name is Lauren and I’m a fifth year PhD student in the Neuroscience area of Psychology. I’m originally from Southern California and I studied Philosophy-Neuroscience-Psychology and Economics at Washington University in St. Louis before coming to Yale. My research utilizes behavioral, neuroimaging and computational techniques to examine motivation and cognitive control in the domains of human decision making and goal pursuit. I look forward to being a part of the TD community!

 

Sandra Sánchez

Hello! My name is Sandra Sánchez (they/them) and I am a third-year Ph.D. student in the History Department. My work examines the intersecting meanings of citizenship and belonging for migrants and Native communities across the 19th and early 20th centuries in North America.

Before coming to New Haven, I completed my undergraduate degree in History, Chinese Literature & Language and Indigenous Studies at the University of Kansas. Outside of schoolwork, I enjoy gaming, drawing, and playing music. 

Besides my hobbies, I would love to talk more about working at a museum/library and navigating diversity in academia.

Email: sandra.sanchez@yale.edu

Dan Stein

Ashé! I’m Dan (he/him), and I’m a 3L at the law school. I graduated from Yale College in 2015, where I was a first-year counselor in TD! Between college and law school, I served on Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, worked in the office of U.S. Senator Kamala D. Harris, and fought to expand voting access in North Carolina. I spent this past summer at Service Employees International Union (SEIU). Please reach out to talk law school, workers’ rights, public service, baseball, or anything else!

 

Email: dan.stein@yale.edu

Charles Troup

Hi everyone – my name is Charlie and I’m a third-year PhD student in History. I’m originally from a town in the North-West of the UK near Manchester, but lived in Oxford for five years as an undergraduate and then as a Master’s student. I’m interested in the intellectual and political history of modern Europe, and especially the history of neoliberalism. If you’re working on any related topics in history or political theory, let me know – I’d love to help you out with the Mellon Forum! I’m also happy to advise if you have any questions about what studying in the UK as an exchange or postgraduate student might be like. Outside graduate school I love going to concerts, playing the flute, watching soccer and hiking. I’m looking forward to meeting you all!

 

E-mail: charles.troup@yale.edu

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Evan Walker-Wells
 
I’m a TD 2013/2014 alumn who’s back in New Haven pursuing a joint JD-MBA. I’m in my second year of the program. Originally from Brooklyn, NY, I was a history major and CCE in college—and afterward I moved to North Carolina to start a journalism nonprofit called Scalawag. I’m interested in public defense, housing law, and health care. I hope to move back to the South and work to support movements for racial and social justice.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Elton Zhou
 
Hey TD! My name is Elton and I am a third year medical student. I graduated from Yale College in 2015 and spent time consulting and doing clinical research before starting medical school. I like playing and watching sports, hiking, baking, and sleeping. Most importantly, I have a uncontrollably friendly dog that you will see around the courtyard in the hopefully near future. Ashé.