MIT Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Visiting Professor and Scholar Program
MLK Professors and Scholars 2011-2012 Profiles

Eilaf Ahmed, MLK Visiting Scholar, Chemistry

Paul Ampadu, MLK Visiting Associate Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Andra Gillespie, MLK Visiting Associate Professor, Political Science

Keivan Guadalupe-Stassun, MLK Visiting Professor, Physics

Sophia Inzunza, MLK Visiting Scholar, Physics

Juana Mendenhall, MLK Visiting Assistant Professor, Chemistry

Susan Perkins, MLK Visiting Assistant Professor, Sloan School of Management

Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, MLK Visiting Scholar, Physics

Sean Seymore, MLK Visiting Associate Professor, Science, Technology, and Society


photo of Eilaf Ahmed

Eilaf Ahmed received her Ph.D. from the Department of Chemistry at the University of Washington in June 2011. Her graduate work has focused on organic electronic materials directed at photovoltaics and thin film field- effect transistors. As a MLK Visiting Scholar, she will work closely with Professor Timothy Swager on DNA hybrid assemblies with carbon nanotubes in the Department of Chemistry. The plan is for creating innovative hybrid assemblies of conjugated organic molecules, DNA and carbon nanotubes.

photo of Paul Ampadu

Paul Ampadu is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering at the University of Rochester. As an MLK Visiting Associate Professor, he will be hosted by Professor Vladimir Stojanovic in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. He will continue his research activities involving algorithm and implementation methodology for energy constrained sensing and communication systems. In the Fall of 2011 he will assist in courses offered under the new EECS curriculum.

photo of Andra Gillespie

Andra Gillespie is an associate professor of political science at Emory whose research generational conflict among African American political elites. Profs. Nobles and Stewart will be her hosts at MIT in the Department of Political Science. As an MLK Visiting Associate Professor, Dr. Gillespie will be co-teaching a graduate seminar in the Fall 2011 and an undergraduate subject in the Spring 2012 in the Department of Political Science.

photo of Keivan Guadalupe-Stassun

Keivan Guadalupe-Stassun is currently Professor of Physics at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee and an Adjunct Professor of Physics at Fisk University.  Prof.  Stassun is well known for his research on star and planet formation, and leadership of the Fisk-Vanderbilt Masters-to-Ph.D. Bridge Program. As a MLK Visiting Professor, he will be hosted by Professors Ed Berstchinger and Enectali Figueroa-Feliciano in the Department of Physics. During his stay at MIT, he will concentrate his efforts on increasing the number of underrepresented minority students in the Physics graduate programs.They will also collaborate on a project to measure trace chemical species in supernova remnants via x-ray and infrared spectroscopy.

Sophia Inzunza earned her Ph.D. in Physics at the University of Mexico. As a MLK Visiting Scholar she will join the Neutrino and Dark Matter Research Group led by Professor Joseph Formaggio in the Department of Physics. Their focus will be on the Design and Development of Project 8 and on the role of Beta Decay Experiments toward Relic Neutrino Detection.

photo of Susan Perkins

Susan Perkins, Assistant Professor of Management and Organizations & International Business and Markets at the Kellogg School of Management, will be visiting in the Organization Studies Group this academic year as a MIT MLK Visiting Assistant Professor. Susan is an international business Strategy Scholar who’s research focuses on cross-country variations in the institutional environment and their effects on firms performance, strategic responses, alliance formations and Broader societal outcomes. She teaches International Business Strategy in Non-Market Environments at Kellogg in the Full Time, Part Time and Executive MBA Programs. As a MLK Visiting Assistant Professor, Dr. Perkins will expand her research agenda to better understand how multinational corporations leverage prior institutional experience as a source of competitive advantage. Her research has interdisciplinary implications traversing the fields of strategy, and organizations, political science, law and economics which all play a part in solving complex institutional puzzles.

photo of Chanda Prescod-Weinstein

Chanda Prescod-Weinstein hails from East Los Angeles and was a NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellow in the Observational Cosmology Lab at Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD before coming to MIT. She is hosted by Prof. Ed Bertschinger in the Department of Physics and will continue her research on exploring models from particle physics and quantum gravity for cosmic acceleration, as well as her investigations of the systematics associated with using a space telescope to do weak lensing for precision cosmology. As a MLK Visiting Scholar, Dr. Prescod-Weinstein will work with Prof. Bertschinger to develop a Boston-area peer mentoring network for women of color in science and engineering. She is an active member of the leadership of both the National Society of Black Physicists and the National Society of Hispanic Physicists.

photo of Sean Seymore

Sean Seymore is currently an Associate Professor of Law and an Associate Professor of Chemistry at Vanderbilt University. His research focuses on how patent law should evolve in response to advances in science and technology and how the intersection of law and science is critical to the formation of public policy. He has a B.S. in Chemistry from Tennessee (Tenneesse Scholar), a M.S. Chem. from Georgia Tech, a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Notre Dame (Arthur J. Schmitt Presidential Fellow) and  J.D. from Notre Dame (Allen Endowment  Fellow). Before moving to Vanderbilt, Prof. Seymore taught at Washington & Lee and Northwestern and practiced patent law at Foley Hoag in Boston. As an MLK Visiting Professor, Prof. Seymore will work on current research projects relating to the disclosure function of the patent system and transformative proposals to promote the shared policy goals of science and patent law. He will be hosted by Professors Roe Smith and David Mindell in the Program in Science, Technology, and Society.