Graduate Student Profiles

Amanda Bries

Amanda Bries has been with Iowa State since the beginning of her undergraduate degree in dietetics — now, she's nearing earning her doctorate in nutritional sciences. Read about how Amanda has taken advantage of numerous research opportunities to reach her goal of becoming a scientist.

Maria Perez

Maria Perez went from majoring in theater arts as an undergraduate to pursing a PhD in kinesiology with a focus in exercise psychology. She's now passionate about informing others about the mental health benefits of being active.

Dyese Matthews

Dyese Matthews has been fascinated by fashion since she was a young girl watching her mother get dressed. Now a master's of science student, she focuses on researching the influence of Black fashion and American history with the end goal of being a professor and entrepreneur.

Maria Espino

Maria Espino hopes to work as a faculty member at a research institution after she graduates with her Ph.D. When she isn't studying, Maria likes to journal and plan, listen to music, and go to the gym. 

Steven Waddell

Steven Waddell hopes to one day run his own college. In his free time Steven enjoys photography, writing, video games, basketball, and being vegan. 

Emily Parent

Emily Parent intends to use her degree to work on her weight management program full time. When she isn't studying, she enjoys going for a run, cooking, and relaxing on the lake with friends and family.

Gina Lee

After earning her master’s degree and Ph.D. in gerontology, Gina Lee wants to work at a research institution. During her free time, you can find her dancing, watching movies, or Instagraming.

Lauren Stratton

Lauren Stratton sees herself doing research, programming, and/or policy work for an organization devoted to helping older adults and their caregivers after graduation. In her spare time now, she stays active at her church, does community theater, and plays with her two bunnies.

Carter Reed

Carter Reed wants to use his doctoral degree to eventually teach university students. During his time outside of class and lab work, he enjoys playing sports, reading books, playing guitar, and hanging out with friends.

Hannah Dannewitz

Hannah Dannewitz looks forward to working in long-term care administration after she graduates. Until she enters the industry, she enjoys spending time cooking, binge watching TV, and spending time with her dog, Kaia.

Peiyi Lu

Peiyi Lu hopes to use her doctorate in gerontology to be a researcher after she graduates. For now, Peiyi enjoys spending her time exercising, watching TV, and traveling.

Katie Anthony

Katie Anthony wants to be a professor at a research institution to continue researching and teaching. When she isn't balancing the many responsibilities of a Ph.D. student, she enjoys reading and traveling back to her hometown to see her family and her dogs.

Chloe Steffensmeier

Chloe Steffensmeier hopes to one day use her master's degree in gerontology to work for the Department on Aging. In her free time, she enjoys playing piano, being outdoors, and spending time with friends and family.

Olivia Diggs

Olivia Diggs wants to become a tenured professor at an R1 teaching and research academic institution. Between research projects, Olivia finds time to kayak, attend concerts, and support her siblings in their sporting and music activities.

Jordan Arellanes

Jordan Arellanes hopes to become a professor at a research-intensive university. Jordan spends time fishing, coaching soccer, and playing with his dog, Lana, when he isn't in the lab.

Kathryn Southard

Kathryn Southard's goal is to become a professor within a kinesiology or exercise science department at a mid-sized university. In her free time between research you can find her gardening, walking her dog, or baking.

Jess Alley

Jess Alley hopes to open her own business collaborating her education with her love for the outdoors. When she isn't studying, she enjoys running, climbing, and backpacking.

Mitch Stephenson

Mitch Stephenson aspires to be a university professor of biomechanics. When he isn't studying, he enjoys indoor exercises, motorcycle riding, and building/restoring items like furniture and vintage stereos.

Joey Lee

Joey Lee wants to teach as a professor at a small or mid-level university or at a community college. When he isn't studying, he enjoys playing basketball, working out, and spending time with his one-year-old son.

Angelica Jasper

Angelica Jasper aspires to teach gerontology. When she isn't studying or researching, she enjoys taking advantage of doing nothing, kayaking, and being outside.

Emily McKnight

Emily McKnight aspires to be an author, certified dating/relationship coach, and a tenured professor. When she isn't studying, she enjoys spending quality time with her family.

Randie D. Camp

Randie D. Camp plans to help others through her graduate degree. When she isn’t studying or working on research, she enjoys reading young adult novels, being ridiculously silly with  her son, or watching a Marvel movie.