Track: Molecular, Cellular, and Physiological 
Graduation Year: Spring 2022
Hometown: Damascus, MD

Meet Olivia! Olivia has always been interested in studying psychology to understand how an individual’s thoughts and behaviors contribute to how they cope with adversity, perceive others, and make integral decisions. She also enjoys studying the complexity of living organisms, such as the mechanisms that keep a single cell functioning. Due to her interest in both psychology and biology, she decided to major in neuroscience because it facilitates an understanding of psychological states based on neurobiological mechanisms. Olivia is looking forward to solidifying what she has already learned so far in her Neuroscience courses by studying fundamental principles of neurons and neural circuits in the neuroscience lab.

In the past, Olivia has worked as an undergraduate research assistant (RA) for the University of Maryland Child Development Lab with a focus on researching the contributing factors to the development of generalized anxiety disorder. Currently, she works as a dental assistant since she aspires to become a dentist in the future. Olivia has learned many aspects of dental practice, from welcoming patients to preparing them for dental surgeries. She has gained experience in preparing treatment rooms, providing instrumentation, handling sterilizing work, and assisting dentists chairside during procedures such as extractions, implants and fillings.

In the upcoming school year, Olivia will also continue her roles as a Student Ambassador for the Health Professions Office Advising office, Vice President for the Neuroscience Honors Society (Nu Rho Psi), Social Media chair for Operations Smiles, and Public Outreach for Miles for Smiles. 

If you'd like to hear more about Olivia's experiences, please contact her at ostephen [at]