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Aurora Marie Washington

Professional Profile


I am a PhD Candidate in the Biotechnology program where I currently study toxicity testing of environmental compounds in species-specific three- dimensional in vitro central nervous system platforms. My scientific background includes assay optimization, peripheral nervous system cultures, NASA bioreactors, nanoparticle synthesis and application for hyper-thermal therapy, as well as international public health. My professional interests also include STEM engagement for underrepresented groups and diversity, equity and inclusion for Black, Indigenous and People of Color in STEM, medicine and therapeutics. (CV is available upon request)


2017 - Present

Doctoral (Ph.D)


Brown University

2016 - 2017

Post- Baccalaureate


Brown University

2012 - 2016

Bachelor's of Science


(Magna Cum Laude)

Tougaloo College

2010 - 2012

Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science (High School)

I study in a Tissue Engineering lab where I investigate the response of  species-specific three- dimensional in vitro central nervous system platforms to environmental toxicants. In addition to research, courses and conferences, in the summer of 2019, 2020 and 2021 I worked as a STEM workshop leader for Leadership Alliance. I also stay engaged by participating on committees, serving as a graduate student representative for the Carney Institute for Brain Sciences and volunteering with organizations affiliate with Brown and also separate entities.

As a post- baccalaureate scholar I received a foundation of experiences and skills necessary to be successful graduate students in PhD programs. This was achieved using two principal components: (1) an independent research project and (2) graduate coursework.

I matriculated through Tougaloo as a Presidential Scholar. I was also a Jackson Heart Study scholar where I took special courses and participated in research during the academic year to prepare me for a career in STEM. I also participated in research through summer internships and volunteered in with multiple organizations.

MSMS is a residential high school for academically talented juniors and seniors in the state of MS. Students are selected via application and interview process and are the top 5% in their graduating class in the state..

Featured Media

The Reede Scholars "Health Equity and Microaggressions in Academia and Medicine"
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Leadership Alliance- Navigating Fellowships & Graduate School Finances- Moderator
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Brown Daily Herald: Carney Graduate Student Award
2015 Emerging Researchers National Conference in STEM
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2021 Carney Graduate Student Award
2014 - 2016 Mississippi INBRE Scholar

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