Diversity, equity & inclusion

Interconnected clusters of different colored dots and lines

Shalek Lab researchers combined machine learning with RNA expression sequences of 45,782 cells from 14 organs to create this atlas of healthy cell physiology. Representing various cell subpopulations (dots) and their relationships (lines), this map of cell behavior may help studies of human diseases such as HIV and cancer. Credit: Carly Ziegler, Shaina Carroll, Leslie Kean, Alex Shalek (2019 Image Award winner)

Our Values

The Koch Institute was established to accelerate the fight against cancer by bringing researchers from diverse disciplinary perspectives to work together. We believe that the success of our endeavors depends on an equitable and inclusive research model that encourages and values contributions by individuals from all backgrounds and experiences.

We are committed to fostering a community where a diversity of opinions and backgrounds, including race, ethnicity, gender, sexual identity and orientation, ability, religion, and country of origin, is welcomed and celebrated.

To achieve this goal, the Koch Institute community shares the responsibility to advance equity and inclusion at all levels, among faculty, staff, and trainees. We are always working to improve the equity and inclusivity of our community through action that includes but is not limited to: expecting all members of our community to be respectful and compassionate in their interactions with one another and rejecting harassment, discrimination, and bullying; recruiting faculty, staff and trainees from diverse groups and taking steps to ensure members of these groups are supported and feel welcome; prioritizing the mental and physical health of our community members; improving our understanding around privileges and disadvantages associated with various identities and their intersections; and actively seeking out historically excluded voices and challenging unconscious biases to create a more equitable community.

These actions support our founding principles, strengthen our research, and increase the capacity of all Koch Institute members to have a positive impact on one another and the world.

The KI Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council can be reached by email at ki-dei-council@mit.edu (goes to all members). Our members are:

Michael Birnbaum, Associate Professor of Biological Engineering
Christina Cabana, Graduate Student, Jacks Lab
Asheley Chapman, Postdoctoral Associate, Irvine Lab
Andrea Garmilla, Graduate Student, Birnbaum Lab
Michele Griffin, Assistant Core Leader, Flow Cytometry Core
Allen Jiang, Graduate Student, Anderson Lab/Langer Lab
Grace Johnson, Graduate Student, Sánchez-Rivera Lab
Samantha Keogh, Administrative Assistant, HQ
Brianna Lax, Graduate Student, Wittrup Lab
Laura Maiorino, Postdoctoral Fellow, Irvine Lab
Shanu Mehta, Research Specialist, Flow Cytometry: Nanowell Cytometry Core
Enrico Moiso, Postdoctoral Associate, Garg Lab/Sharp Lab
Muhammad Munim, Graduate Student, Vander Heiden Lab
Tahoura Samad, Postdoctoral Associate, Bhatia Lab
Francisco Sánchez-Rivera, Assistant Professor of Biology
Kiera Sapp, Graduate Student, Vander Heiden Lab
Joelle Straehla, Koch Institute Clinical Investigator
Karen Yee, Lab Manager, Jacks Lab

Ex Officio:
Terry Clewley, Sr. Manager HR & Administration
Sara Hellmold, Assistant Director, Stewardship
Darrell Irvine, Associate Director
Andreea O'Connell, Assistant Director for Administration
Erika Reinfeld, Manager, Public Programs & Outreach 
Matt Vander Heiden, Director

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