Office of the President

2020-21 President's Scholars

Suhani B. Bhakta

Suhani B. Bhakta

Kim Family President’s Scholar (Graduate)

Master of Science in Biological Sciences

College of Science

University Programs: Introductory biology lab teaching associate, researcher 

An undergraduate biology class was the motivation for Suhani B. Bhakta to pursue a master’s degree in molecular biology, with the goal of eventually earning her Ph.D. She is interested in learning about the regulatory function of cells, which can inform both the development of diseases and immunity to fight off infectious pathogens. Her work with immunoparasitology research in Dr. Frances Mercer’s lab gave her the opportunity to present at the Southern California Eukaryotic Pathogen Symposium. She also enjoys helping students build a foundation for their upper-division classes. “I would like to encourage women, especially women of color, to pursue careers in STEM because diversity in the field is important. When young girls can witness intelligent and independent women conducting science, they will believe that they can too,” she says. Outside of school, Suhani teaches dance at the Bhakta Samaj of Southern California Center to children, hoping to ignite their passion to carry their cultural values and traditions to the next generation.