STEM Routes (CU Boulder Chapter of the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos & Native Americans in Science, SACNAS) is a graduate student-run organization that creates programming and support systems for marginalized students' access to graduate education. Our efforts are motivated by the challenges we personally experienced while navigating our pathways to graduate school. For the last five years, 5–8 graduate student leaders from STEM departments across the College of Engineering & Applied Science (CEAS) and the College of Arts & Science (CA&S) have worked closely each week to create valuable support systems and serve as the mentors we wish we had.


Selfie of a white male-presenting individual with long reddish-brown hair secured behind his hair and a beard.

Nate Andersen

Graduate Student
Integrative Physiology
White female selfie smiling at camera

Sarah Gonzalez Coffin

Graduate Student • Faculty Mentor: Leaf Van Boven
Psychology & Neuroscience
Hi all! My name is Sarah Gonzalez Coffin and I’m a Social Psychology PhD student & Indigenous researcher at the University of Colorado Boulder. I study decision-making and behavior change in response to climate change. I grew up in rural Northern California. In 2017, I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and minor in Statistics from California State University, Monterey Bay. In my sophomore year, I got involved...
Photo of Dr. Cowell, a light-skinned man with short light hair and wire-frame glasses

Andy Cowell

Faculty Member
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR NATIVE AMERICAN & INDIGENOUS STUDIES Andrew Cowell received his PhD from UC Berkeley in 1993. He works in the areas of linguistic anthropology and language documentation. He has worked primarily on Arapaho, and also Gros Ventre and Miwok, and has an interest in Polynesia (Hawaii and Tahiti in particular) as well. He has published numerous articles and books, as well as developing curricular material and websites...
Photo of Josh, a light-skinned Japanese man with dark hair framing his face.

Josh Fandel

Graduate Student
Josh hails from the San Francisco Bay Area, where he grew up, went to school, and worked before moving to Japan for two years to teach English and reconnect with that part of his background. He is currently a PhD student in both the Niswander lab and Knight labs at CU. In the Niswander lab he is pursuing potential genetic causes of neural tube defects. In the Knight lab he...
Photo of Nai, a light-skinned young woman with dirty blonde hair standing in front of autumn leaves.

Nai Garcia

Graduate Student
Naiara, or Nai (as most people call her), is currently a third year graduate student in the Niswander Lab in the Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology (MCDB) Department. She graduated from Winona State University in 2017 with a B.Sc. in Cell and Molecular Biology. She moved to the USA in 2014 from Brazil, where she was born, and moved to Boulder in 2018, where she has been working for CU...
Photo of Chris, a light-skinned man wearing a light blue button-down shirt

Chris Lowry

Faculty Member
Integrative Physiology
Christopher A. Lowry, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Integrative Physiology, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, Center for Neuroscience, and Center for Microbial Exploration at the University of Colorado Boulder, with a secondary appointment in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R) and Center for Neuroscience, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, a Principal Investigator in the Department of Veterans Affairs Eastern Colorado Health Care System,...
Photograph of Faith, a Black woman wearing a grey sweatershirt standing in front of an art exhibit.

Faith Olulana

Graduate Student
Chemical & Biological Engineering
BOOKCLUB LEAD Faith is currently a third year graduate student in the Neu Lab in the Biomedical Engineering Department. She graduated from the University of Maryland (UMD) in 2020 with a B.S. in Bioengineering and minor in Global Engineering Leadership. Her research involves percolation studies of various tissues for extracellular matrix recellularization and integration. Her interests include reading, staying active, and eating.
Selfie of a white female smiling

Andrea Ordoñez

Graduate Student
Molecular • Cellular • and Developmental Biology
I was born and raised in Quito, Ecuador, where I was inspired by the ecological and human diversity that surrounded me to pursue the study of molecular biology and genetics. I graduated in 2015 with a BA in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of California, Berkeley and then received an MSc degree in Human Molecular Genetic from Imperial College London in 2018. At CU Boulder, I am part...
Photo of Saydie, a young Native woman with dark skin and shoulder-length dark hair.

Saydie Sago

Graduate Student
Integrative Physiology
Saydie Sago is a Native American (Zuni Pueblo and Mescalero Apache) doctoral student in the Integrative Physiology Department. She was born and raised in Colorado and received her bachelor's and master's degree at CU Boulder. Saydie is part of Dr. Christopher Lowry's Behavioral Neuroendocrinology lab. Her research involves investigating alternative treatments for mental health problems using a soil bacteria strain, Mycobacterium vaccae NCTC 11659. Learning the basic mechanisms of how...
Photo of dana, a light-skinned young woman with short dark hair and wearing a baggy, orange T-shirt and a bandana

Dana Stamo

Chemical & Biological Engineering
As a current PhD student, I want to foster a culture that blends and weaves DEI issues throughout academia, rather than tacking on lists of DEI tasks. In my nine years at CU Boulder, I have led four student organizations and three undergraduate research opportunities as well as participated in three faculty searches in the College of Engineering & Applied Science and the campus-wide search for the Senior Vice Chancellor...