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Where Are They Now?: Profiles of Illinois Alumni

One of the best ways to explore where an advanced degree can take you is to learn about what alumni are doing and how they got there. Informational interviews are an incredible resource in this area, and we encourage you to conduct some of your own. But you can also find a number of interviews with or profiles of people with advanced degrees online.

On this page, we have gathered together entries from the "Where Are They Now?" series on the GradLife blog that highlights the amazing work that Illinois graduate alumni are doing in a broad range of careers. We post one interview each month to the blog and add new profiles to this page, so check back for more stories.

By Discipline

Humanities & Arts

Nile Blunt (Ph.D., History)

Hannah Chan-Hartley (Ph.D., Musicology)

Cecily Garber (Ph.D., English)

Ryan McConnell (Ph.D., Classical Philology)

Heather Salus (M.F.A., Creative Writing)

Social Sciences

April Warren-Grice (Ph.D., Educational Policy Studies)

Michelle Voss (Ph.D., Psychology)

Mariela Fernandez (Ph.D., Recreation, Sport & Tourism)

Karen Barton (M.S., Library and Information Science)

Lexi Shurilla (M.S., Recreation, Sport & Tourism)

Morgan (McClain-McKinney) Limo (M.A., Political Science)

Alison Goebel (Ph.D., Anthropology)

Physical Sciences, Engineering & Math

Mert Bay (Ph.D., Electrical and Computer Engineering)

Marios Georgiou (Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering)

Christine Herman (Ph.D., Chemistry)

Meredith Sellers (Ph.D., Chemical Engineering)

Michael Santana (Ph.D., Mathematics)

Geethika Yalamanchili (Ph.D., Chemical Engineering)

Life Sciences

Irene Aninye (Ph.D., Molecular & Integrative Physiology)

Tori Davis (M.S., Food Science & Human Nutrition)

Norman Atkins, Jr. (Ph.D., Neuroscience)

Madeline Meyer (M.S., Food Science & Human Nutrition)

Irisbel Guzman Sanchez (Ph.D., Biochemistry)

Adam Brandt (Ph.D., Animal Sciences)

Amber Hendricks (M.S., Agricultural Production)

By Job Sector

Higher Education

April Warren-Grice (Coordinator for Professional Development and Assistant Professor of Curriculum Instruction, Kansas State University)

Michelle Voss (Assistant Professor of Psychological & Brain Sciences, University of Iowa)

Mariela Fernandez (Assistant Professor of Parks, Recreation & Tourism Management, Clemson University)

Michael Santana (Assistant Professor, Grand Valley State University)

Karen Barton (Community Engagement Librarian, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio)

Adam Brandt (Assistant Professor of Biology, St. Norbert College)


Cecily Garber (Communications Officer, Council of Independent Colleges)

Christine Herman (Multimedia Producer, WILL/Illinois Public Media)

Hannah Chan-Hartley (Managing Editor and Musicologist, Toronto Symphony Orchestra)

Alison Goebel (Executive Director, Greater Ohio Policy Center)

k-12 Education

April Warren-Grice (Coordinator for Professional Development and Assistant Professor of Curriculum Instruction, Kansas State University)

Nile Blunt (Instructor of History and Curator, Phillips Academy)


Heather Salus (Permissions Researcher, The Permissions Group)

Norman Atkins, Jr. (Franchise Global Medical Lead, Shire Neuroscience)

Mert Bay (Principal Data Scientist, Conversion Logic)

Marios Georgiou (Value Engineer, Addison-HVAC)

Meredith Sellers (Managing Engineer, Exponent Failure Analysis Associates)

Tori Davis (Group Manager, AB InBev)

Madeline Meyer (Regulatory Affairs Associate, Becton, Dickinson and Company)

Geethika Yalamanchili (Computational Research Biologist and Research Scientist, Ancestry DNA)

Lexi Shurilla (Editor-in-Chief, Community Concierge Magazine)

Amber Hendricks (Production Research Scientist, Corteva Agriscience)

Ryan McConnell (Senior Demo Engineer, Salesforce)


Irene Aninye (Postdoctoral Fellow, National Institutes of Health)

Irisbel Guzman Sanchez (Health Science Specialist, U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs - New England Healthcare System)

Morgan (McClain-McKinney) Limo (Foreign Service Officer, U.S. Agency for International Development)

You can find more interviews with and articles about people with advanced degrees by following these links:

From PhD to Life

What Are All the PhDs

PhDs at Work

TRaCE project


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