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Nicholas Santiago

Instructor | Pre-College Programs

Dr. Nicholas Santiago holds a B.S. in Biology and Society, concentrating in Neurobiology and Behavior, from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in Environmental Toxicology from the University of California, Santa Cruz. In undergrad his interdisciplinary major allowed him to explore his interests in both the neurochemical and psychology side of neuroscience taking courses, such as Drugs and the Brain, Neurobiology of Schizophrenia, and Adult Psychopathology. His graduate school research allowed him to combine his interest in neuroscience with how environmental chemical exposures can contribute to the development of neurological disorders in children, such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). He used both cognitive behavioral tests and molecular approaches in animal models and cell culture studies to fill these knowledge gaps. In 2018, Dr. Santiago joined the Institute for Scientist and Engineer Educators where for two summers he developed and led workshops for incoming undergraduate students. It is here he developed his passion for teaching and since then has participated in several teaching leadership conferences, has written two publications on STEM workshop design and equitable and inclusive teaching practices, and is now supporting the program's return. Dr. Santiago is currently using his technical training and background to inform California state policy decisions at the CalEPA Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.