Spring for STEM

Spring for STEM

Spring for STEM

Spring for STEM


April 11, 2019

Gene Editing and the Future of Disease: The CRISPR Revolution

About Spring for STEM

NYSCI’s fifth annual Spring for STEM offered a deep dive into the revolution of bioengineering and genetics being made possible with CRISPR gene editing technology, led by a panel of experts who guided us through the policy and ethical implications of CRISPR on global health.

Spring for STEM provides a distinctive platform for presenting critical issues to people interested in science, education, and the cultural and intellectual life of New York. We are proud to host this annual invitation-only event that highlights various perspectives on STEM learning and creativity, while keeping NYSCI’s unique Design, Make, Play approach at the heart of the conversation.

For more information, please contact us at 718-595-9180 or presidentscouncil@nysci.org.


Robbie Barbero

As the chief business officer at Ceres Nanosciences, Robbie works with the CEO and the rest of the team to drive business growth by supporting key product development programs and identifying new technology commercialization and industry partnership opportunities.

Robbie received his doctorate in biological engineering from MIT, where he received various awards, including being named an MIT Presidential Fellow and a Siebel Scholar. Before graduate school, Robbie spent five years working for three biotechnology startups – GlycoFi (acquired by Merck), Quantum Dot Corporation (acquired by Invitrogen), and Nanostream.

Prior to joining Ceres, Robbie was the assistant director of biological innovation in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy where he spent more than four years developing and implementing policy on global and national life science issues.

Kevin Esvelt

Kevin M. Esvelt is an assistant professor of the MIT Media Lab, where he leads the Sculpting Evolution Group in exploring evolutionary and ecological engineering.

In 2013, Esvelt was the first to identify the potential for CRISPR “gene drive” systems to alter wild populations of organisms. Recognizing the implications of an advance that could enable individual scientists to alter the shared environment, he and his colleagues chose to break with scientific tradition by revealing their findings and calling for open discussion and safeguards before they demonstrated the technology in the laboratory.

His work is frequently published in top scientific journals, including Nature and Science, and covered in The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, PBS NOVA and NPR.

Rachel Haurwitz

Rachel is a co-founder of Caribou Biosciences and has been president and CEO since its inception in 2011. She has a research background in CRISPR-Cas biology and is also a co-founder of Intellia Therapeutics.

Rachel is an inventor on several patents and patent applications covering multiple CRISPR-based technologies, and she has co-authored scientific papers in high impact journals characterizing CRISPR-Cas systems.

In 2014, she was named by Forbes Magazine to the “30 Under 30” list in science and healthcare, and in 2016, Fortune Magazine named her to the “40 Under 40” list of the most influential young people in business. In 2018, the Association for Women in Science recognized Rachel with the annual Next Generation Award.

Sharon Begley

Sharon Begley is the senior science writer at STAT, the life sciences publication of the Boston Globe. Previously she was the senior health and science correspondent at Reuters, the science editor and science columnist at Newsweek, and the science columnist at The Wall Street Journal.

Sharon is the recipient of numerous awards for her writing, including an honorary degree from the University of North Carolina at Asheville for communicating science to the public, the Public Understanding of Science Award from the San Francisco Exploratorium, and the Victor Cohn prize. She has spoken before many audiences about science writing, neuroplasticity and science literacy.

She is the author of the 2017 book Can’t Just Stop: An Investigation of Compulsions; co-author (with Richard J. Davidson) of the 2012 book The Emotional Life of Your Brain; author of the 2007 book Train Your Mind, Change Your Brain; and co-author (with Jeffrey Schwartz) of the 2002 book The Mind and the Brain.

About President's Council

The President’s Council is a diverse and dynamic group of individuals who are passionate about STEM. Our members provide crucial support for the museum to thrive and serve as a laboratory for learning, a training ground for young scientists, and an anchor for members of our community to engage with creative STEM learning experiences.

Members of the President’s Council are entitled to a host of benefits, including unlimited guest passes to NYSCI, insider access to exhibits, behind-the-scenes tours, invitations to exclusive events and receptions with distinguished STEM leaders, and much more.

For more information, please contact presidentscouncil@nysci.org, ph: 718-595-9180.