In The News

Check Presentation at Scripps Research

(January 26, 2023) Nine exceptional grad students at Scripps Research received 2022-2023 ARCS Scholar Awards totaling $90,000 in funds. On a beautiful sunny afternoon in late January, it was time to make it official with the traditional check presentation…in a spectacular setting on the deck of SR’s Faculty Club, no less!  Congratulations one and all!


Check Presentation at San Diego State University

(December 9, 2022) ARCS President, Dr. Kathe Albrecht, and University Relations VP, Pat Judd, were honored to present SDSU President, Dr. Adela de la Torre, with a $110,000 check for this year's 11 truly remarkable ARCS Scholars. After two years on Zoom, we were thrilled to meet in person for this annual celebration.

SDSU dignitaries in attendance:  Dr. Bill Tong, Vice-Provost, Dr. Jeff Roberts, Dean, and Dr, Cathie Atkins, Associate Dean (Emeritus)


Check Presentation at University of San Diego

(October 20, 2022) ARCS San Diego was honored to present Scholar Awards ($10,000/ea) to four outstanding graduate students enrolled in USD’s Hahn School of Nursing and Health Science program for the 2022-2023 academic year: Patricia Magdaluyo, Andrea Correia, Jennie Lee, and Nicole Marcy. Congratulations one and all for this achievement!

USD check presentation
USD scholars


Check Presentation at UC San Diego

(October 5, 2022) Great to be back in person again at UC San Diego for the annual check presentation after zooming for two years! ARCS members presented a check for $260,000 to Executive Vice Chancellor Dr. Elizabeth Simmons who was reminded not to spend it all in one place. She responded that she knew 26 places to spend this award!

Dean Jim Antony, EVC Elizabeth Simmons and Assistant Dean Tamara Schaps and her team hosted ARCS members and 2021-22 and 2022-23 Scholars at the UCSD Faculty Club for this event. They rolled out the red carpet for all of us and were so appreciative of the ARCS program and our long-standing relationship and support of UCSD graduate students in STEM. We have 26 Scholars at UCSD this year, including eight new Scholars.

ARCS members in attendance: Kathe Albrecht, Pat Judd, Holly Heaton and Elizabeth Taft. ARCS Scholars in attendance: Nishta Krishnan, Chiaki Santiago, Josh Mesfin, Kellen Cavagnero, Laura Becerra, Anela Akiona, Alec Calac, Minerva Contreras, Jervaughn Hunter, David McBride, Sankaran Ramanarayanan, Kyle Angel, Krista Balto.

UCSD Check Presentation
Pat and Holly receive the check


Virtual Check Presentation at Scripps Research

(March 3, 2022) ARCS San Diego awarded a total of $45,000 to 9 graduate students at Scripps Research for the 2021-2022 academic year. The official check presentation was held virtually on March 3, 3022. In attendance were many of the Scholar award recipients (Brett Garabedian, Nathalia Gazaniga, Hailee Perrett, Sergio Labra, Caroline Stanton, and Nelson Wu), along with Phil Dawson, PhD, Dean of the Skaggs Graduate School of Chemical and Biological Sciences, Dawn Eastmond, PhD, Director of Graduate Studies, Meredith Johnston, Vice President of Philanthropy, Allison Basille, Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations and Addie Eure, Senior Manager of Donor Relations. ARCS members in attendance included Holly Heaton, Tamia Strachan, Laurie Roeder, Ellen Moxham, Karen Bowden, Patricia Judd, Ingrid Benirschke-Perkins and Toby Eisenberg.

Brett Michael Garabedian
Molecular Medicine

Nathalia Romanio Gazaniga
Biomedical Sciences

Tucker Ryan Huffman




Sergio Rodriguez Labra
Biomedical Science

Lucas James Oxtaby

Hailee Rose Perrett
Biophysics and Structural Biology




Caroline Rose Stanton
Biomedical Sciences

Nelson Ren Wu

Leonard Heekyu Yoon
Chemical Biology

Meredith Johnston began the meeting expressing the institute’s overwhelming gratitude to the ARCS Foundation for their support over the last 25 years, remarking that the first Scholar awards for graduate students at Scripps Research took place in 1997! Meredith shared that ARCS San Diego has provided Scripps Research with over $1M to date and supported 75 students. Meredith provided updates on last year’s graduating Scholars, noting where each has ended up post-graduation. Next, Dean Phil Dawson provided some updates on the current trajectory of the graduate program at Scripps Research. Dean Dawson shared that SR continues to receive a record number of applicants year over year and has a high acceptance rate among those offered admission. Additionally, Dean Dawson shared that the student body has near gender balance and is working closely with Scripps Research leadership on an institute-wide Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiative. After Dean Dawson, Dawn Eastmond introduced each of the current Scholars in attendance, each of whom then shared a bit about their research and future plans.

Closing out the meeting, ARCS San Diego Chapter President Holly Heaton expressed ARCS’ enthusiasm for its partnership with Scripps Research over the years. The group also discussed their shared excitement surrounding the upcoming Scientist of the Year Event, which will honor SR’s most recent Nobel Laureate, Dr. Ardem Patapoutian.


Holly Heaton Honored

(February 2022) The February issue of Ranch & Coast Magazine featured a wonderful write-up of ARCS San Diego's fearless leader, Holly Heaton. Since 2012 she has lent her time, talent, and treasure to our chapter, serving as our President during the last three years. She has also served as President of San Diego Blood Bank and volunteered at San Diego Hospice, so it's no surprise that she is one of twelve Women of Dedication to be honored on April 1, 2022 by the Salvation Army Women's Auxiliary. Brava, Holly, and thank you for all you do for ARCS and the San Diego Community!

Holly Heaton Honored