Communications Coordinator at Vanderbilt's Frist Center for Autism and Innovation
Claire Barnett is a 2019 cum laude graduate of Vanderbilt's Peabody School, with a Bachelor of Science in Human and Organizational Development. She now works as the Communications Coordinator at Vanderbilt's Frist Center for Autism and Innovation. Claire is an autism self-advocate and proponent of the neurodiversity movement. Last year she founded the Vanderbilt Autism & Neurodiversity Alliance (VANA) and wrote a disability advocacy column for the Vanderbilt Hustler. She is also a passionate photojournalist, and spent two of her three years as an undergraduate student as the Photography Director of the Hustler.
In addition to neurodiversity advocacy and photography, Claire is also fascinated by politics and has completed two internships for Senator Lamar Alexander and two internships through the White House Internship Program. She hopes to spend her career doing some combination of photography and writing, autism advocacy, and government service.
Senior, Mathematics and Computer Science double major and minor in Cinema and Media Arts
Kamala Varma is a senior double majoring in Mathematics and Computer Science and minoring in Cinema and Media Arts. Driven by her fascination with emerging technology, she plans to enroll in a PhD program in pursuit of a career in computer science research. She was born in Nashville (in the Vanderbilt hospital!), has lived in Berkeley, and currently calls Minneapolis her home. She has a passion for art, and in her talk, she will share her excursions in computer artistry.
Katy Friedman Miller
Katy Friedman Miller, MSW, LCSW is a grief therapist with a private practice in St. Louis, Missouri.
Katy Friedman Miller, MSW, LCSW is a grief therapist with a private practice in St. Louis, Missouri. After graduating from Vanderbilt with a B.A. in English in 1994, she worked in public health public relations in Washington, D.C., eventually finding her way to social work and graduating with a Masters Degree from the Brown School at Washington University in 2001.
As a home hospice social worker, she found meaning and passion while partnering with patients and families facing end-of-life issues. She loves being a mom of her two teenage kids, and she loves storytelling and poetry. Her poems have been published in a number of journals, including The Nashville Review, Pleiades, Natural Bridge, and the American Journal of Nursing. Her essays and blogs may be found on Medium. She hopes her work and sense of humor inspires courage, honesty, and compassion.
Diné/Navajo + PhD candidate Genomics and Health Disparities
Krystal Tsosie (Diné/Navajo), MPH, MA, is currently completing an interdisciplinary PhD in Genomics and Health Disparities at Vanderbilt University. She also serves as faculty at a tribal college and co-leads genomic studies related to women’s health in a tribal community in North Dakota. Krystal advocates strongly for genomic and data sovereignty and is a co-founder of the first Indigenous-led biobank for tribes in South Dakota. While it may be unusual to lead a number of research projects as a graduate student, it is a reflection of the dire need for Indigenous scientists to promote equitable genomics research in tribal communities. Krystal has provided commentary on issues related to DNA, politics, and identity in her articles published in The Atlantic and others worldwide. She was also an early commentator on the Elizabeth Warren DNA test controversy in outlets such as , NPR, NY Times, Forbes, and The Boston Globe.
Sarah Jordan Welch
Prevention Educator and Victim Resource Specialist
Sarah Jordan Welch is a Prevention Educator and Victim Resource Specialist with the Project Safe Center for Sexual Misconduct Prevention and Response, at Vanderbilt University. Sarah Jordan is a Licensed Master Social Worker and holds a Master of Social Work from the University of Washington, and a Bachelor of Arts from The Evergreen State College. Sarah Jordan has worked with survivors of interpersonal violence for nearly a decade in a variety of settings including domestic violence shelters, sexual assault agencies, non-profits, and universities. Sarah Jordan’s focus is in supporting survivors, and helping navigate the relationship between trauma and bodies, while also understanding and educating on the systemic causes of violence. She is a Registered Yoga Teacher, with an emphasis on trauma-informed yoga. She is currently a doctoral candidate at the School of Social Work at the University of Tennessee.
Senior, double majoring in Communication Studies & Psychology
Tommy Oswalt is an undergraduate senior at Vanderbilt University in the College of Arts and Science, double majoring in Communication Studies & Psychology. Recipient of the William H. Cammack Scholarship and the 2019 Vanderbilt Student Leadership Award, Tommy is a member of on-campus organizations like VUcept and Camp Kesem, working as the Head Resident Advisor of his residence hall, and volunteering his time at Seacrest Studios at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital. Raised in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, Tommy grew up in a rich music-filled environment, learning just as much from his musician mother and politician father as he did from his local community. Now, living in another music city, Tommy has continued to pursue his interests in music and politics in Nashville at Vanderbilt with professors that push him to analyze both subject areas through new lenses. In the future, Tommy plans to pursue a career in marketing or human resources in either the music or technology industry.
Senior, double major in Mathematics and Communication of Science & Technology
Troy Jiang (’20) is an undergraduate student in the College of Arts and Science, double majoring in Mathematics and Communication of Science & Technology. Originally from China, he has a keen interest in learning about perspectives from different backgrounds. Troy believes in the power of great energy and positivity when approaching challenges and difficult topics.
On campus Troy has served as an executive board member for VUcept, Undergraduate Honor Council, and VandyHacks. Outside of Vanderbilt, he has had the opportunity to learn about the consulting and financial services industry. After graduation, Troy is excited to return to the business world and further empower individuals, organizations, and communities with his analytical skills and creative thinking.