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Amy Howard (biophysics student) has joined Cassandra Hayne (biochemistry student) as the new student representative for the department.

Cassandra Hayne (left) and Amy Howard (right)

Amy Howard has stepped up as the new biophysics student representative (replacing Karen Plevock who previously filled the role). Cassandra Hayne, the existing biochemistry student representative, will remain in her role for another term. Both students will also be serving as representatives for the Department to the Graduate and Professional Student Federation (GPSF).

Amy grew up in Minnesota, and graduated from the University of St. Thomas in 2012 with a B.S. in Biochemistry. While at St. Thomas, she studied the inter- and intra-molecular properties of small molecules using X-ray crystallography with Dr. William Ojala. She moved for the first time in the fall of 2012 to North Carolina to attend graduate school at UNC. Amy joined the Molecular and Cellular Biophysics program in 2012 and our Department and the Slep Lab the following spring. Amy is currently utilizing structural, biochemical, and cellular assays to study how the XMAP215 family mechanistically interacts with tubulin to accelerate microtubule polymerization. In her free time Amy enjoys fishing, hiking, and playing with her rambunctious Coton de Tulear puppy Minnie.

Cassandra is a rising fourth year student who has been actively involved in the department and across campus since she arrived at UNC. Within our department, Cassandra has served on the Department Retreat, Potluck Thursdays and Holiday Party committees. Outside of her research and campus involvement, Cassandra is actively involved in science outreach.

Student events are posted on the Graduate Student Events Webpage as well as communicated via Facebook and Twitter. Ideas and suggestions for student related events may be directed to Cassandra ( or Amy (.