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Young Scientists Mentor Session

On Wednesday, September 29th we held our virtual Young Scientist Mentor Session.  This was a wonderful opportunity for students to meet with two mentors and further discuss topics in their field.

Thank you to our Mentors for 2021:


Dr. Michael Johnson is a 2017 and 2019 Forbes 30 Under 30 honoree and the CEO and Co-Founder of Visikol which is a biotech company that spun out of Rutgers University in 2016 and is focused on advanced imaging, digital pathology and 3D cell culture. Michael founded the company along with his fellow PhD candidate Thomas Villani and colleague Nick Crider. Michael has a diverse background with experiences in both the technical and business considerations of running a biotech business. Following his undergraduate degree in biology at Muhlenberg College, Michael spent three years in various roles at Johnson & Johnson while concurrently pursuing a PhD in applied microbiology at Rutgers University. Michael’s research background has focused on a wide-range of projects from remote sensing research with NASA to building light sheet microscopes and producing biofuels. Prior to launching Visikol, Michael worked on several other biotech-based entrepreneurial pursuits and is very passionate about translating cutting edge research into life-changing commercial technologies. At Visikol, Michael is responsible for the company’s overall strategy as well as its business development and operational efforts. Michael Johnson, PhD
CEO – Visikol Inc.


Dr. Manpreet Randhawa  Beauty enthusiast, author, avid hiker and aspiring entrepreneur Dr. Manpreet Randhawa has 15 years of experience in the beauty industry. She brings expertise in scientifically driven health care solutions including skincare, haircare and sun care categories. She understands the complexities at cellular, molecular, and physiological levels, when it comes to skin health. She has the passion to innovate and create products that connect with consumers and deliver meaningful results. With an educational background in cellular biology and clinical evaluation, her career is dedicated to providing scientifically sound solutions for skin health. Dr Randhawa is Director of Research and Innovation at Sytheon Ltd. and leads the development of active ingredients backed by science and translated through clinical benefits.  Prior to joining Sytheon in 2019, she spent 10 years at Johnson and Johnson understanding the mechanism behind skin aging, pigmentation, and developing respective solutions. She is author to numerous peer reviewed publications.   She can be contacted at


Our Moderators for the Young Scientist Mentor Session were:

Dr. Kavita Beri
BE Mind Body Skin

Dr. Beri is a board-certified physician, author, and educator in the field of wellness, beauty, and cosmetics. She is the founder of BE Mind Body Skin an integrative and wellness cosmetic practice with a focus on creating beauty to empower one’s journey. With her clinical practice and unique approach to beauty, Dr.  Beri focuses on research and education on Yoga science, integrative health, and wellness as well as ancient esoteric philosophy, vibrational healing, and Vedic Astrology. She has been interviewed by leading beauty and spa magazines including Women’s Health, Euro Cosmetics, Household & Personal Care Today. She has presented at various national and international scientific conferences including Teen Vogue Summit in Los Angeles, Women’s Global Forum in Paris. Dr. Beri is highly published and an editorial board member for various national and international beauty magazines, as well as several scientific journals. She is a Yoga Alliance certified Yoga Instructor E-RYT and Yoga Alliance Education provider specializing in Yoga Philosophy, also is an active member of the American Theosophical Society. She holds the title of Adjunct Professor in Biomedical Sciences and Visiting Scientist at the Center for Biomaterials Rutgers University, New Jersey. She was appointed as a Fellow of Regenerative Cosmetics at TRI Princeton in 2017


Kristen S. Labazzo, PhD, MBA is an assistant professor of professional practice and the undergraduate program director in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Rutgers University. She has a doctorate in biomedical engineering from Rutgers University, an executive MBA from the New Jersey Institute of Technology, and a BA in chemistry from Caldwell University. Dr. Labazzo brings 15 years of experience in biomaterials, tissue engineering, and stem cell biology to academia, ten of which were in industry. As an educator, Dr. Labazzo has developed new industrial courses, a co-op program, and leads patient-centric research projects in collaboration with organizations for the disabled. She was the 2019 and 2021 Engineering Governing Council Professor of the Year in biomedical engineering, the recipient of the 2021 Provost’s Award for Excellence in Teaching Innovations, and has been awarded multiple grants towards her efforts on helping the disabled and developing experiential learning opportunities for undergraduates. She was also recently appointed to be the chair of the Matheny School Board.