Arizona State University - PhD student, SOLS Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Neuroscience (Aug 2021-Present)
University of Alaska Anchorage - M.S. in Biological Sciences, Aug 2014
University of Alaska Anchorage - B.S. in Natural Sciences, Dec 2010. Cum Laude.
Born and raised in rural Alaska, Savannah attended the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA) as a UA Scholar, earning a BS degree in Natural Science. After graduation, she began as an adjunct instructor at UAA's Biological Sciences department, and realized her love for biomedical research while teaching undergraduate labs in Cell Biology and Genetics. Soon after, she began her MS under Dr. Jason Burkhead, working on the role of dietary copper in non-alcholic fatty liver disease while serving as a teaching assistant and research assistant. After completing her MS, she continued teaching at UAA as an adjunct and then a term instructor. Over the course of her time at UAA, she taught everything from non-majors introductory biology and biology laboratory courses for STEM students (including general biology, cell biology and genetics) to human anatomy and physiology lecture and laboratory courses for health sciences students.
Savannah first joined the ASU community on the Research Advancement team in ASU's School of Life Sciences (SOLS) in October 2017 where she assisted with general pre-award activities, e.g., searching for and disseminating funding solicitations for SOLS faculty, publication of the SOLS Research Advancement Newsletter, and preparation and submission of proposals to federal and philanthropic sponsors.
She now works within Biodesign's ASU-Banner Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center. She is a member of the Velazquez Lab, where she is involved in projects investigating mechanisms of basal forebrain cholinergic neuron alterations in mouse models of Down Syndrome and their relationship to neurodegeneration in Alzheimer's disease. She began the SOLS Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Neuroscience PhD program in Fall 2021 and has since been awarded a prestigious Society for Neuroscience Trainee Professional Development Award and been nominated as a College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Student leader.