Vision and Leadership – 2017-18


The MIT Biotechnology Group aims to increase the pace of biotechnological innovation by building strong, symbiotic relationships between the MIT community and thought-leaders in academia, industry, and business.

We endeavor to serve the MIT community by facilitating development of the knowledge, skills, networks, and experiences to prepare members for biotechnology-related careers.

Executive Team

Brett Geiger

Brett Geiger is a PhD candidate in the Department of Biological Engineering at MIT and the Program in Polymers and Soft Matter. He conducts research focused on designing nanoparticles to efficiently penetrate and deliver drugs to cartilage for treatment of osteoarthritis.

Ashvin Bashyam

Ashvin is a PhD candidate in the Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science at MIT. His research uses magnetic resonance in assessing fluid dysregulation disorders for clinical applications. He is also a co-founder of a non-profit developing unmanned aerial vehicles for wilderness search and rescue.

Sam Huang
Undergraduate President

Sam Huang is a junior in Chemical Engineering interested in the business and financing side of the biopharma industry. Within the MIT Biotech Group, he has founded an investment due-diligence group and launched an angel group focused on the life-sciences.

Greg Ekchian
Director of Finance

Greg is a PhD candidate in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. His research focuses on the development of injectable materials for long-term in vivo monitoring of oxygen and pH to guide treatment of diseases including cancer and injuries to tissue vascularization.

Jessica Carr
Director of Communications

Jessica is a PhD candidate in the Department of Chemistry at MIT. Through her research, she develops imaging technologies and medical devices for biological fluorescence imaging and for Ear, Nose, and Throat diagnostics.

Rachit Neupane
Director of Events

Rachit is a PhD candidate at the MIT Koch Institute for Cancer Research and is enrolled in the MIT Sloan Healthcare Certificate Program. His research examines the role of epigenetic regulators in tumor maintenance in the context of lung and colon cancer.

Initiative Directors

Joshua Peters
Beyond the Bench Initiative Co-Director

Josh is a graduate student in the Biological Engineering program. He has been involved in science engagement ever since creating Family Science Night as a senior in high school. He also serves as an academic chair on the BE Graduate Board.

Rosanna Zhang
Beyond the Bench Initiative Co-Director

Rosanna is an undergraduate student, double majoring in Computational Biology and Management. Her experiences spread across research, tech entrepreneurship, and investment, and her ultimate goal is to drive healthcare innovation. In her free time, she enjoys scuba diving, skiing, and poetry.

Lena Afeyan
Entrepreneurship Initiative Co-Director

Lena is a PhD candidate in the Department of Biology at MIT. Her research focuses on developing a method for specificity profiling for recombinases and using directed evolution of proteins to engineer genome-editing tools. She has also worked with MBG for the last couple of years in planning events in her previous role as the president of Harvard’s undergraduate biotech group.

Ken Hampshire
Entrepreneurship Initiative Co-Director

Ken is an MBA candidate at MIT Sloan and an SM candidate in the MIT School of Engineering. He served eight years in the US Marine Corps before leaving active duty to pursue a career in biopharma.

Skyler Kaufman
Industry Initiative Co-Director

Skyler is an undergraduate computational biology major with a special interest in cancer therapeutics and molecular data integration. He enjoys playing volleyball, cooking and eating food, and talking about philosophy.

Skyler Stern
Industry Initiative Co-Director

Skyler is a Fellow in the Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) program and is currently an MBA and SM Civil & Environmental Engineering candidate, focusing on supply chain and logistics. Previously, Skyler worked for Catalent Pharma Solutions in various roles, most recently as a Project Manager in the company’s Biologics division in Madison, WI. Skyler earned his BS Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering from Johns Hopkins University.

Ariel Brito
Investment Initiative Co-Director

Ariel is an undergraduate student pursuing a BS degree in Computer Science, Economics, and Data Science. In addition to working with MBG, he is a Financial Board Member for the MIT Undergraduate Association, and performs research in the Sculpting Evolution Group at the MIT Media Lab.

Catie Matthews
Investment Initiative Co-Director

Catie is a joint degree candidate pursuing a PhD in Chemical Engineering and an MBA at Sloan. In her research, she uses genome-wide sequencing to optimize manufacturing of therapeutic proteins. She is part of a team developing a modular continuous system for rapid production of biologic drugs, with applications in personalized medicine and local manufacturing.

Dave Lin
Undergraduate Education Co-Director

Dave is an undergraduate student double majoring in EECS and Bio-engineering. He enjoys cross-disciplinary work involving information technology, physics, and biology. His experiences include research in both biophysics and cognitive science.

Phuong Pham
Undergraduate Education Co-Director

Phuong Pham is an undergraduate majoring in Computer Science and Molecular Biology. She is interested in machine learning and its applications in various healthcare problems. In her free time, she enjoys reading books, meeting people, and staying up to date with biotechnology news.