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Tara Spencer

Ph.D. Candidate in Biology

Tara Spencer

Tara Spencer is a 4th year PhD Candidate at the University of California, San Diego. She was raised in the twin-island country of Antigua and Barbuda, located in the heart of the Caribbean. At an early age, Tara developed an interest in general biology, and in 2018, moved to Washington, DC to pursue undergraduate education at Howard University. Under the mentorship of Dr. Courtney Robinson, she gained exposure to the world of biological research and became specifically infatuated with microbial ecology. In 2018, Tara graduated from Howard with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and moved to San Diego to start graduate school. At UC San Diego she works in the Rachel Dutton lab, where she studies principles that allow microorganisms to communicate and assemble into robust communities. Outside of her love for science, Tara enjoys activities that promote the success of all students, regardless of their backgrounds. With a few of my colleagues, Tara co-founded the Biology Undergraduate and Master’s Mentorship Program (BUMMP) in 2020, which aims to provide resources to minority students in Biology to ensure their success after graduation. Additionally, she works with the Black Resource Center to plan informative and enjoyable events for black graduate students at UCSD. In my free time, I enjoy exploring San Diego with my dog Mecca, and dipping my toes into different creative outlets.