First Name

Isha

Last Name

D.

Bio

Isha encompasses an extraordinary passion for learning and creating, which drives her aspiration to one day make a significant contribution to the field of bioinformatics. In the next couple of years, she wants to work upon the innovation and development of big data technologies and the computational power of cloud based technologies that will enable building scalable R&D data platforms. She believes that this will allow for immense breakthroughs and discoveries in clinical research. Last summer, she was selected to be a scholar at the prestigious computational biology program from the Hillman Academy, formerly known as the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute. She worked on a cutting edge cancer research project which focused upon identifying miRNA targets in gene expression datasets of breast invasive carcinoma utilizing causal discovery algorithms. This experience was a significant stepping stone in her aspirations, since it allowed her to apply her analytical research skill sets and complex programming knowledge to a real life challenge such as identifying miRNA targets in gene expression datasets of breast invasive carcinoma. This experience also allowed her to co-author the research paper “A pipeline for integrated theory and data-driven modeling of genomic and clinical data”, which was accepted by BioKDD. Furthermore, Isha has also been selected to be a part of the Westinghouse Science National Honors Institute and is a statewide winner of the PennDOT Innovations Challenge. Isha is also a part of an all-female robotics team known as the Pittsburgh Girls Of Steel, in which she is a member of the programming team. She is an avid activist in promoting her team’s mission of empowering women and girls in the pursuit of STEM by exemplifying female success in robotics. She aims to inspire young women in her community through participating in numerous service projects and demonstrations many of which include hands-on robot development. She is honored to be a member of the NCWIT community which has inspired and encouraged her to continue her passions. Currently, she is continuing computational cancer research at Benos Lab (from the Department of Computational & Systems Biology) and after graduating high school, Isha plans to major in computer science and minor in artificial intelligence, or biochemistry.