2023 Women in Science Symposium 

‘Multicultural Aspects of One Health’
March 8, 2023
9 AM to 3 PM
Canvas Stadium

The Women in Science (WiSCI) Network will be hosting our 7th annual symposium and celebrating our 10 year anniversary. This year’s symposium will bring diverse voices and perspectives together to share what, why, and how our speaker’s and panelist’s life-work has focused through the broad lens of one health. They will expand upon the three questions below:

  • What inspired you to a career that speaks to and addresses the many One Health challenges we face?
  • How do these challenges disproportionately impact people, environments, animals, and social structures?
  • What can be done at small and large scale to respond to these challenges?

Please join us to learn, engage in dialogue with experts in One Health, and enjoy hands-on experiences for K-12 and the young at heart alike.


MC Hosts: Jen Barfield, Assistant Professor, Biomedical Sciences, and Gregg Dean, Professor, Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology

9 – 9:15 a.m. Welcome & Land Grant Acknowledgement
9:15 – 9:20 a.m. Opening remarks by CSU Interim Provost Jan Nerger

9:30 – 10 a.m. Sue VandeWoude
10 – 10:30 a.m. Kelsey Dayle John
10:30 – 11 a.m. Meena Balgopal
11 – 11:30 a.m. Moderated discussion with speakers

10:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. K-12 Segment – Human and Animal Bond in Colorado (HABIC), CVMBS ‘Sci On the Fly’, DVM Teddy Bear Care, ERHS Occupational Health and Safety, Balloon Stressors, How Your Body Works, CSU Bug Zoo, Brain Awareness Week, Movement in Dance and more.

11:30 – 12:30 p.m. Lunch (sponsored by CSU’s Women and Philanthropy)

12:30 – 2 p.m. Panel Discussion – Climate Change

Moderator: Melissa Burt (20 minute talk)
Panelists: Azmal Hossan, Sheryl Magzamen, Christina Reimer, Maddie Sofia

2 – 2:35 p.m. Nozipho Becker

2:35 – 2:50 p.m. Closing remarks by CSU Associate Vice President for Inclusive Excellence Shannon Archibeque-Engle
2:50 – 3 p.m. Final remarks by WiSCI’s Candace Mathiason


Sue VandeWoude

Sue VandeWoude is the Dean for the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, and an University Distinguished Professor of Comparative Medicine. Dr. VandeWoude’s research focuses on the biology, pathogenesis, trans-species infectivity, and co-evolution of HIV-like retroviruses of endangered non-domestic felid species. These naturally occurring felid lentiviruses provide insight into the phylogeny, immunologic control, and potential heterospecies transmission of AIDS-like viruses in nature. Ongoing studies include characterization virus and host factors relating to clinical disease expression, and development of novel vaccines against feline immunodeficiency virus infection. Her laboratory also studies the ecology of infectious diseases in North American felid species, specifically the impact of urbanization on the spread of disease between domestic cats, bobcats, and pumas.

Kelsey Dayle John

Kelsey Dayle John (Diné) is an assistant professor at the University of Arizona with a joint appointment in American Indian Studies and Gender and Women’s Studies as well as summer work with the UA College of Veterinary Medicine. She studies equine/human relationships in Native American communities. She is a 2021 National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow and is working on a book project about equine/human relationships in Indigenous methodologies. Previously, Kelsey taught in the Diné Studies department at Navajo Technical University. She completed her Ph.D. in Education at Syracuse University. For her dissertation research, she worked in partnership with the Navajo Nation to document horse stories for the development of Navajo education and research. She has published in the American Indian Culture and Research Journal, Humananimilia, Edge Effects and several edited volumes including: Decolonising Animals, Indigenous and Decolonising Studies in Education, and Indigenous Religious Traditions in Five Minutes. Kelsey is certified in Equine Facilitated Learning through the HERD institute. She is an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation and in her spare time, she runs with her dogs and works with her horses.

Meena Balgopal

Meena Balgopal is a discipline-based educational researcher in the Department of Biology. Her training is diverse and spans agro-ecology, insect ecology, and science education. She earned her BS from the University of Illinois: Urbana-Champaign, her MS from the University of Wisconsin: Madison, and her PhD in Biological Science from North Dakota State University. She joined CSU in 2008. For the past 20 years she has been studying the role that instructional strategies have on learners’ environmental and scientific literacy. Her research interests center on “writing to learn,” group work, place-based curricula, and most recently on graphical reasoning. Her research is conducted in both formal (school and college science classrooms) and informal (citizen science, community gardens, museum) settings. Much of her work examines how learners’ identities and worldviews shape their learning outcomes and experiences. She became a Fulbright Scholar in 2019 when she spent several months in India working on the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. There, she collaborated with NGO and academic partners on improving environmental education in coastal communities suffering from the consequences of climate change. This past spring, she was recognized for her scholarship in science teaching and success as a science educator when she was designated one of twelve University Distinguished Teaching Scholar (UDTS).

Nozipho Becker

Nozipho Becker serves as a Qualitative and Survey Research Analyst in the Office of Inclusive Excellence at Colorado State University. Dr. Becker is a first-generation immigrant from Eswatini (formerly Swaziland) in southern Africa, and she is a first-generation college graduate in her family. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Food Science and Nutrition from the University of Eswatini. She came to the U.S. on a Fulbright scholarship in 2011 to pursue her graduate studies at the University of Massachusetts, where she received both her Master’s and PhD in Public Health, Nutrition, and Epidemiology. Dr. Becker’s research experience has incorporated both qualitative and quantitative approaches to address issues of racism/social justice and social/structural determinants of health as they relate to nutrition, food insecurity, and chronic disease. In the past, she worked with non-profit organizations and government agencies to help establish and implement intervention strategies aimed at improving HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment, maternal and child health, and nutrition/food security in the U.S and in her home country of Eswatini. As part of her postdoctoral training at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), she collaborated with diverse teams of academic investigators on research projects aimed at improving health outcomes among populations marginalized due to racism, sexism, and homophobia. Additionally, during her time at UCSF, Dr. Becker contributed toward strategic initiatives targeted at improving diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism efforts in her division and in the postdoctoral scholars association. As a member of the CSU community, she hopes to contribute by conducting research aimed at improving equitable access to education and health. She intends to focus primarily on employing a community-based participatory research approach toward developing and implementing evidence-based interventions, policies, and programs to advance diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism/social justice work in our community.

Panel Moderator & Panelists

Melissa Burt

Melissa Burt is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Atmospheric Science and Assistant Dean for Diversity and Inclusion in the Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering at Colorado State University. Her research spans the intersection of atmospheric science and social justice issues. Dr. Burt also focuses on recruitment, retention, and engagement of students, staff, and faculty and is committed to fostering an inclusive College environment. She is the Vice President for the non-profit 501(c)3 organization, the Earth Science Women’s Network. Burt is a co-founder of Science Moms, a non-partisan group of climate scientists and mothers working to give our children the planet they deserve. Dr. Burt has a B.S. degree in Meteorology from Millersville University and a M.S. and Ph.D. in Atmospheric Science from Colorado State University.

Azmal Hossan

Azmal Hossan is a Bangladeshi Ph.D. student of Sociology and a National Research Trainee in Interdisciplinary Training, Education, and Research in Food-Energy-Water Systems (InTERFEWS) at Colorado State University. Currently, he is working as a Graduate Teaching Instructor in the Department of Sociology where he teaches classes on sociological theories, methods, and environmental sociology. He is also a former Agents of Change in Environmental Justice Fellow at Columbia University. His research interests are human dimensions of climate change, environmental justice, food-energy-water nexus, and science communication with a special focus on the Global South. Before joining the Ph.D. program, Azmal completed his MA in Sociology from Texas Tech University where he had the opportunity to work with Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, one of the leading climate scientists and climate change communication specialists. In his MA thesis, he examined how the underlying connection between climate change and poor household amenities affects women’s nutritional status in Bangladesh. For his Ph.D. project, Azmal is doing research on how climate change and unbalanced regional political-economic structure are generating water injustice among the indigenous farmers in Bangladesh. In addition to his Ph.D. research, Azmal has been actively contributing to various interdisciplinary research projects covering climate gentrification and socio-environmental injustice, green infrastructure and environmental injustice, disaster and food security, community resilience, etc. As part of his science communication efforts, Azmal published in Anthroposphere: The Oxford Climate Review, Environmental Health News, and Himal Southasian. He also talked about his research as an invited guest in podcasts like Agents of Change in Environmental Justice and Future Cities. Recently he was interviewed and featured by Forbes Magazine.

Sheryl Magzamen

Sheryl Magzamen is an Associate Professor in the Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences at Colorado State. Her primary research interest focuses on understanding the relative contribution of social factors and environmental exposures on chronic disease, with an emphasis on respiratory health. She has conducted fieldwork across the United States in communities that shoulder a disproportionate burden of environmental and chemical pollution with the goal developing research to inform policy to protect the health and well-being of all residents. Her collaborative work in one health seeks to understand the role of the environment in companion animal and production animal health. Sheryl earned her PhD at Berkeley, her undergraduate degree at Cornell, and teaches classes at CSU in environmental health, geographic information systems, and epidemiology. For the 2022-23 academic year, she is a research fellow at the US Green Building Council in Washington, DC.

Maddie Sofia

Maddie Sofia is a scientist and a journalist. She was the founding host of NPR’s daily science podcast, Short Wave. Maddie’s work is centered on inclusive communication and increasing the representation of marginalized communities in science journalism. She has reported on COVID, inequities in academia and public health, and some of the earth’s most fascinating creepy-crawlies.  She is particularly interested in highlighting queer voices and issues. Maddie is currently freelancing, conducting science communication workshops, and giving lectures. You can find her most recent work in Science Friday and PBS/KQED.

Christina Reimer is a primary care internal medicine physician in Fort Collins, Colorado and the Assistant Dean of Medical Education at the new University of Colorado School of Medicine at Colorado State University.  In this role she is working with faculty colleagues to develop interprofessional education experiences in the One Health Space acknowledging that the health of humans is interdependent on the health of plants, animals, and the environment.