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Genetic Counseling Class of 2016

Our second-year students have just finished their first rotations this summer. They are working on their research projects and preparing for their trip to the NSGC Annual Education Conference in Pittsburgh, PA in October.  
Top row (l to r): Sara Malka Cohen, Emily Lundberg, Janet Malcolmson
Bottom row (l to r): Rachel Rabin, Emily Rosen, Jaime Tramontana


Sara Malka Cohen
(Yeshiva University - Biology)

I am Sara Malka Cohen from Stamford, CT. One of the unique things about me is that I go by my first and middle name - Sara Malka, but even more importantly I am the oldest of six girls. I graduated in May 2014, with a major in biology, from Stern College for Women, Yeshiva University. As to be expected, I find science and psychology fascinating, but I enjoy learning about other topics too. In my free time and/or relaxation time, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, reading, painting, and being outside when it isn't too cold.

Emily Lundberg
(UCLA - Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics)

I just graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with a Bachelors in Science in Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics. During my undergraduate years, I enjoyed interning as a clinical research assistant for the Ahmanson/UCLA Adult Congenital Heart Disease Center. I invested in campus life through the UCLA Genetic Counseling Student Group, Campus Crusade for Christ, and Gamma Phi Beta Sorority.  I spent my various summers working in childcare at Mount Hermon Family Camp, studying abroad at the University of Sussex in Brighton, England, volunteering with People Assisting the Homeless (PATH), and interning at our family-owned, organic rice farm. Though I will miss the always-sunny skies of Southern California, I am excited to invest in the genetic counseling community at LIU in pursuit of a masters that will further my passion to help those impacted by genetic disease.

Janet Malcolmson
(University of Guelph - Molecular Biology and Genetics)

I am excited to become an international student at LIU, coming from Toronto, Canada. I was introduced to Genetic Counseling while studying for my undergraduate degree at the University of Guelph and immediately knew that this was my career choice. In spring 2012, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Molecular Biology and Genetics. Since then I have continued my education by pursuing an Ethics Certificate specializing in healthcare at Ryerson University. I enjoy staying active in my community by volunteering at a Distress Centre hotline, in a Genetics Clinic, with Girl Guides of Canada and at an Out of the Cold Program for the homeless. I have worked at the Ontario Science Centre for the past five years - both at their summer camps and in their other recreational programs. In my free time I enjoy running, hanging out with friends and drinking tea! I am thrilled to be part of the Genetic Counseling program and am looking forward to attending LIU.

Rachel Rabin
(Tulane University - Cellular and Molecular Biology, Public Health)

Rachel Rabin, originally from New Jersey, is a recent graduate of Tulane University with majors in cellular and molecular biology and public health. Rachel has been working in a research lab in the cellular and molecular biology department for the past year and a half. The ultimate goal of the lab is to develop novel mechanisms to combat retinal diseases and there she works on their genotyping experiments. Rachel has spent the semester interning with the Tulane Infant Team and Tulane Parenting Education Program Family Resource Center. There she worked with maltreated children to cope with any trauma they may have gone through. Going to school in New Orleans allowed Rachel the opportunity to learn about the unique culture the city has to offer. She is excited to start the genetic counseling program at LIU and to explore the future of the field.

Emily Rosen
(Binghampton University - Cellular and Molecular Biology)

A Long Island native, Emily Rosen graduated magna cum laude from Binghamton University with a bachelor’s degree in Cellular and Molecular Biology. She is a member of the national Phi Beta Kappa honor society which prides itself on the motto “love of learning is the guide of life.” While in college, Emily enjoyed volunteering for a family planning agency, working at the community museum, and teaching science to the local first graders. In the winter of 2012, Emily was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to observe at a prenatal genetic counseling agency, which deepened her interest in the profession. She is very excited about pursuing her graduate studies at LIU's Genetic Counseling Program and to see what the future has in store for her.

Jaime Tramontana
(Rochester Institute of Technology - Biomedical Sciences)

Born and raised in Bohemia, NY, Jaime Tramontana graduated 24th in her high school class. She attended Rochester Institute of Technology, graduating with a Bachelor's in Biomedical Sciences. She chose three electives in her senior year, in which she saw her future. Having excelled in science and compassionate by nature, she fell in love with genetic counseling. Jaime involved herself in volunteering at a rehab setting, dealing with people with disabilities, the homeless, and end of life. She saw many things that touched her. Jaime is very honored to have been accepted at LIU and looks forward to pursuing her dream.


Genetic Counseling Class of 2017




We have just welcomed our latest group of first-year students. They are settling into their classes.  
Top row (l to r): Rachel Higdon, Jessica Kenney, Samantha Melnick
Bottom row (l to r): Jamina Oomen, Pooja Swaroop, Victoria Tecson

Rachel Higdon
(University of Colorado at Boulder - Integrative Physiology)
My name is Rachel Higdon and I was born and raised in Denver, CO and I have lived there my whole life until coming to LIU-Post. I graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder in May 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in Integrative Physiology. I spent the last three years working with genetic counselors and medical oncologists at the Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers in Denver. I have been an active volunteer with Planned Parenthood and the oncology program at Presbyterian/St. Luke’s Hospital. I also spent a significant amount of time volunteering with our research department at the Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers. I made genetic counseling the center of my life for three years and I believe whole-heartedly in the work we do. I’ve been working towards and looking forward to this opportunity to be a student of genetic counseling, especially since I have been able to witness and participate in this life-altering and life-saving service that genetic counselors offer the medical world. While I have a great passion for cancer genetic counseling, I am excited to see where this journey takes me. I feel honored to be part of this program and humbled to have the opportunity to make a difference in the world. My fiancé, Jerod is also relocating to the New York area with me and we plan to enjoy our time on the east coast while planning a wedding for after graduation!
Jessica Kenney
(Northeastern University - Communication; LIU Post - Nutrition)
Jessica Kenney is a mom of two amazing girls: Ella is a 4 year old and Sophie is 9 months of age. She received her first bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies from Northeastern University in 2001. She spent 12 years in corporate fashion, mostly in the footwear wholesale sales arena selling to major department stores and specialty stores. She then sought out a career change to bring her closer to her interests of human anatomy and biology by returning to school in 2012 and enrolling in the Nutrition Program at LIU Post from which she received a second bachelor of science degree in 2014. Through her time at LIU Post, Dr. Ramer and friends, she discovered the field of genetic counseling and is now pursuing her graduate degree in such.
Samantha Melnick
(University of Pennsylvania - Biological Basis of Behavior)
Samantha Melnick is a native of New Jersey. She attended the University of Pennsylvania where she studied Biological Basis of Behavior. She also attended the post-baccalaureate program at Columbia University. Samantha has volunteered in the Emergency Department at Weill-Cornell Medical Center; she has a special interest in preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD).
Jamina Oomen-Hajagos
(Yale University - Biology; Stony Brook University - Genetics MA/PhD)
Jamina Oomen-Hajagos is originally from the Netherlands, but grew up all over the world. She earned a Bachelor's of Science in Biology from Yale University, as well as a Master of Arts in Biology and a PhD in Genetics, both from Stony Brook University. She has taught science at the high school and college levels, and spent several years working in the financial planning field. Jamina became interested in genetic counseling through her teaching experiences as well as her work in developmental biology as a graduate student, and she is looking forward to combining her interests in genetics and teaching as a genetic counselor. Jamina is married with two children (a boy and a girl) and enjoys traveling, reading, crafts, spending time outdoors, and hanging out with her many pets. She is honored to be joining the LIU Post Genetic Counseling Graduate Program and looks forward to an exciting and fulfilling experience!
Pooja Swaroop
(University of Toronto - Human Genetics and Psychology)
Pooja Swaroop, from Toronto, Canada, graduated with a double major in Human Genetics and Psychology from the University of Toronto. In addition to her undergraduate degree, Pooja’s diverse experiences have further confirmed her interest in Genetic Counseling. She has gained experience in a clinical setting at a Familial Breast Cancer Clinic, and in a research setting at the Autism Research Unit. The research study characterizes the phenotypes of individuals with 22q duplication or 15q deletion and investigates the association with neurodevelopmental disorders. Pooja has also been volunteering for the Toronto Distress Centre for over a year. Her employment history includes experience as a Laboratory Technician, and Student Instructor at the Faculty of Medicine, U of T. In her free time she enjoys reading, traveling, rollerblading and playing with her cat. Pooja is excited to pursue the career of a genetic counselor, and is looking forward to begin her journey at LIU Post.
Maria Victoria Tecson
(Rutgers University - Biochemistry)
Having completed her Biochemistry degree as a Scarlet Knight at Rutgers University almost three years ago, Victoria Tecson is ready to get back into the classroom as part of LIU Post's Genetic Counseling program. With endless curiosity and an open mind, she realized her new dream to become a genetic counselor while working as a molecular technician at Reprogenetics for the past two years. When she is not in scrubs, she enjoys tennis, boxing, traveling in and out of the country, reading, and cuddling with her dachshund. With this opportunity and fresh start, she hopes to make a lasting impact, not just at LIU Post, but on those she encounters in this new chapter of her life and career.


Genetic Counseling Class of 2015

Class of 2015

l to r: Mikaela Lum, Lee Ann McCoy, Nikki Salvatore

Current Position
Mikaela Lum
Genetic Counselor, Genetics Center (Orange, CA)
Lee Ann McCoy
Genetic Counselor, St. Francis Hospital (Roslyn, NY)
Nicole "Nikki" Salvatore Cancer Genetic Coordinator, Meridian Health (Brick, NJ)

Genetic Counseling Class of 2014

Class of 2014

Top row (l to r): Lauren Giannetti, Alex Markese, Michelle Primiano
Bottom row (l to r): Jay Shaw, Elizabeth Strawderman Monast, Francesca Tubito 

Current Position
Lauren Giannetti Genetic Counselor, Gene Screen (Morristown, NJ)
Alexandria "Alex" Markase
Genetic Counselor, Recombine (New York, NY)
Michelle Primiano Genetic Counselor, New York Presbyterian Hospital (New York, NY)
Jessica "Jay" Shaw Genetic Counselor, New York Presbyterian Hospital (New York, NY)
Elizabeth Strawderman Monast Genetic Counselor, Breast Center at Charleston Area Medical Center (Charleston, WV)
Francesca Tubito Genetic Counselor, Jay Monahan Center for Gastrointestinal Health at New York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center (New York, NY)

Genetic Counseling Class of 2013Class of 2013

Top row (l to r): Lauren Ely, Julie Handy, Katherine Fink
Bottom row (l to r): Jessica Miles, Sabrina Mobilio, Victoria Schoepke

Current Position
Lauren Ely Regional Medical Specialist, Myriad Genetics (North Atlantic Region - NJ/PA)
Katherine Fink Regional Medical Specialist, Myriad Genetics (Mid-Southern Region - AR/IL/MO)
Julie Handy Genetic Counselor, Virtua Fox Chase Cancer Center (Greater Philadelphia, PA)
Jessica Miles Genetic Counselor, Prenatal Wellness Center, Medical University of South Carolina (Charleston, SC)
Sabrina Mobilio Genetic Counselor, North Shore University Hospital (Manhasset, NY)
Victoria Schoepke Genetic Counselor, Gettysburg Hospital (Gettysburg, PA)

Genetic Counseling Class of 2012Class of 2012

l to r: Virginia Sack, Calvin Chan, Caitlin Peters, Veena Ganesh, Amanda Brosseau

Alumnus Current Position
Amanda Brosseau
Director of Genetic Counseling Services, Fetal Care Center, Baylor University Medical Center (Dallas, TX)
Calvin Chan Associate Product Manager, Myriad Genetics (Los Angeles, CA)
Veena Ganesh Genetic Counselor, St. Vincent's HealthCare (Jacksonville, FL)
Caitlin Peters Genetic Counselor, Hawai'i Community Genetics at Queen’s Medical Center (Honolulu, HI)
Virginia "Ginny" Sack Genetic Counselor, Albany Medical Center (Albany, NY)



Graduation 2013Graduation 2013

Graduation 2014Graduation 2014



LIU Post Genetic Counseling Alumni Reunion 2014 (NSGC)Alumni Reunion at NSGC AEC Conference 2014 (New Orleans)

Back row (l. to r.): Elizabeth Strawderman Monast ('14), Nancy Steinberg Warren (Past Interim Director), Jay Shaw ('14), Michaela Lum (2nd Year), Nikki Salvatore (2nd Year), Francesa Tubito ('14), Lauren Giannetti ('14), Amanda Brosseau ('12), LeeAnn McCoy (2nd Year), Veena Ganesh ('12), Caitlin Peters ('12)
Front row (l. to r.): Jill Fischer (Director), Ginny Sack ('12)