Diana Dizon is the co-founder and president of Bionerds. Biology has been her passion ever since she can remember. She thinks the human body is a very fascinating machinery. She earned her bachelor degree in Medical Microbiology with a minor in Chemistry from California State University, Long Beach. Then, she continued her academic journey to earn a Master of Science degree in Biotechnology from the University of California, Irvine. She co-authored several publications related to her field. She is also a mother of two children who are curious about everything. Spending more than 16 years combined in pharmaceuticals, academic research and manufacturing department has only deepened her love for biology. Now she is excited to be sharing her passion, expertise, and experience with the younger generation.
Ryan Dizon is the co-founder and Film Director at Bionerds. Ryan is currently attending high school and has been extensively working in Film and Broadcasting program at his schools since he’s a 7th grader. He enjoys helping Bionerds to grow by giving feedbacks from student’s perspective, to assist teachers in class, and to create/edit films and videos captured or used for education throughout the program at home. He is excited to share his talent and effort to bring Bionerds to the next level.
Sopheap Phin, Ph.D., is the curriculum consultant at Bionerds. She helps develop our curriculum, which is guided by the California Department of Education standard and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematic (STEM) Program. She earned her bachelor degree in Medical Microbiology and Molecular Biology from California State University, Long Beach and her doctorate degree in Developmental Biology from the University of California, Irvine. She authored numerous publications in her field and has experience teaching students from the elementary to the college level. She is very passionate about science as well as sharing her enthusiasm for biology. Bionerds is very grateful to have her on board.
Andrew Pham is an Educator Associate who graduated from Chapman University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Science and Chemistry. He is currently working towards obtaining a degree in medicine. He has many years of experience teaching students and is keen on bringing up our next generation of scientists. On his off time, he enjoys playing tennis and cycling. Bionerds is fortunate to have him on the team.
Anika Kenion is an Educator Associate who received a BA in Integrative Biology from University of California, Berkeley, with an emphasis on Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology. She taught for several summers in the Ocean Sciences Program with the Prevent Drowning Foundation of San Diego and spent the last year as an educator at SeaWorld San Diego. She also spent a year in Puerto Rico mentoring college students and engaging in relief work. In addition to teaching at Bionerds, she develops curriculum and teaches ocean science with Sally Ride Science @ UCSD Extension. In her free time, she loves singing, writing and reading poetry and spending time with loved ones. She is passionate about exploring the world of biology with students and creating learning spaces to inspire growth, compassion and challenge. Bionerds is fortunate to have her in our team.
Chandler Dunham is an Educator Associate at Bionerds. She received her Bachelors of Science degree in Human Biology from the University of California, Merced. Chandler has many years of experience working with children, from spending years volunteering for her church youth programs as well as working as a Direct Support Professional for those with special needs. Along with this, she spent two years tutoring the collegiate athletes at her University. With these experiences, she’s found a passion for helping others, teaching, and continuously learning. During her free time, she loves catching up on sleep, working out, and trying new food places! Bionerds is grateful to have her in our team.
David Durtschi is an Educator Associate at Bionerds. He graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia, with a Bachelors degree in Biological Sciences. He has 20 years of experience in Molecular Biology and Genomics research from prestigious institutions such as Yale University, Oak Ridge National Laboratories, and the University of California-Irvine. He has one 11-year-old daughter who also loves science. After volunteering during the after-school programs at his daughter’s school for two years, he discovered a passion for teaching children. He plans to continue teaching and passing on his knowledge and expertise to our next generation of scientists. Bionerds is fortunate to have David in our team.
Elizabeth Mesic is an Educator Associate who graduated from University of Minnesota with a Bachelors of Science degree in Biological Sciences and Public Health. She has years of experience working with kids. She went on to work with a laboratory technology company where she worked with laboratories all over the United States on their purification processes. After observing the after-school programs at her child’s school, she jumped at the chance to share science with kids in a fun, hands on way. She enjoys the excitement kids bring to science and loves to see that interest grow. Bionerds is fortunate to have her on the team.
Eric Fan is an Educator Associate who graduated from California State University, Fullerton with a Masters (MS) degree in Biology and a Bachelors (BS) degree in Biological Science at the University of California, Davis. He has years of experience in marine biology and cancer research. He enjoys science because it is a field of study where he can always learn something new about the world around him. He enjoys playing music and maintaining his planted aquarium during his free time. While pursuing his Master’s degree he discovered a passion for teaching. He enjoys seeing the excitement in his students’ eyes when they learn something new, and he hopes that he can inspire the next generation of young biologists! Bionerds is fortunate to have him in the team.
Josephine is an Educator Assistant for Bionerds. She finds biology to be a very interesting subject. She is attending Irvine Valley College to pursue her bachelor degree in Psychology. She also loves music, playing a violin during her free time. She enjoys working with all students of Bionerds and is excited to work with more future young Bionerds. Bionerds has a blast having her in the team.
Wendy Ochi is an Educator Associate at Bionerds. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology and Science at Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She teaches science at the Ocean Institute, California State University, Long Beach Young Scientist’s camp and Discovery Science in Orange County. Wendy attended California State University, Fullerton where she took courses toward a single-subject credential. Her educational experience at CSUF validated her love of learning science and her desire to teach the subject. Wendy is passionate about mentoring young people, especially girls, and encourages them to pursue rewarding careers in the STEM field. When not teaching science, she enjoys photography, sports and considers herself a “foodie” who loves trying new eateries. Bionerds is excited to have her on our team.