Skip to main content

Class of 2019

Class of 2018

Brittany Allen

Originally from Wisconsin, Brittany earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Michigan in 2017 with a double major in Biology and Cognitive Science. She discovered the genetic counseling profession early in her undergraduate career and found it to be a perfect fit for her passion for genetics and desire to serve others. Her experiences working as a genetic counseling assistant at the U of M Comprehensive Cancer Center, as well as shadowing genetic counselors in the Fetal Diagnostic Center, solidified her desire to pursue this path. Brittany spent many hours volunteering at Ozone House, a 24-hour crisis hotline for youth in her community, where she provided support and resources to young people and their families. In her free time, she enjoys running, playing guitar, and trying new restaurants. She is very excited for the opportunity to join the Genetic Counseling Training Program at the University of Maryland, and begin exploring the city of Baltimore.

Paige Babb

Born and raised a Hoosier, Paige is from Columbus, Indiana. She graduated from Indiana University Bloomington in 2017 where she completed her B.S. in Biology with a concentration in Cellular Biology and Molecular Genetics along with a Psychology minor. During her time at IU, she was an active member of Delta Gamma Sorority, holding multiple leadership positions and participating in various philanthropic opportunities. She is proud to have been a four-year Student Coach for her sorority's Little 500 Bike Team. During her junior year, Paige completed a Health Psychology study abroad program in Vienna, Austria where she also had the opportunity to travel throughout Central Europe. Paige discovered her passion for genetic counseling early on and continued to refine her interest in the field through her college coursework and experience as a volunteer on the crisis counseling line at a local domestic violence shelter. She is extremely excited to make the move to the East Coast and begin exploring the city of Baltimore. As a huge fan of the St. Louis Cardinals and baseball in general, she is especially looking forward to catching games at Camden Yards. In her free time, you can find Paige marathoning Star Wars with her three younger siblings, reading whatever book she can get her hands on, and enjoying craft beer with her friends. She is thrilled to join the Genetic Counseling Training Program and continue her education at the University of Maryland.

Arianna Guillard

Arianna is happy to be back home in her native state of Maryland after receiving her undergraduate degree from the University of Richmond, where she graduated summa cum laude with a double major in Biochemistry and Psychology. Arianna learned about genetic counseling at a young age when a family member went through the process. Her genetic counseling shadowing experiences and a 10 week internship at Mercy Medical Center for Advanced Fetal Care in Baltimore solidified her decision to pursue a career in genetic counseling. Arianna also worked in a biochemistry lab throughout college and gained valuable experience as a volunteer hospital advocate for survivors of sexual and domestic violence. Arianna has always had a passion for theatre, travelling and “I Love Lucy” reruns. She is thrilled to join the MGC program at the University of Maryland and is eager to see what this new experience will bring.

Shaydah Kheradmand

As a University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) alumni, Shaydah is delighted to return to Baltimore and join the MGC program at the University of Maryland. Shaydah earned her BS in Psychology in 2012 with concentrations in both Biopsychology and Human Services. Shaydah spent the following year immersing herself into the world of tea (another love of hers) while simultaneously searching for a career that married her passions for genetics and human services. During this period Shaydah discovered genetic counseling and later earned a BA in Biological Sciences at UMBC in 2014. After earning her BA, Shaydah worked as a Rehabilitation Counselor at Humanim and helped those with developmental disabilities work towards both personal and economic independence while enhancing their growth and quality of life. Shaydah has also volunteered as a call specialist at a local crisis hotline, and has spent her most recent years as a genetic counseling assistant at GeneDx. Shaydah describes her work and volunteer experiences as only solidifying her deep passion and interests in the genetic counseling field. In her free time, she enjoys playing video games, dancing, and most importantly, sharing tacos with close friends.

Ryan Kuehl

Originally from Springfield Massachusetts, Ryan graduated in 2017 from Providence College with honors and a B.S. in Biology. Ryan took on various leadership roles while at Providence College, including two years as a resident assistant learning essential crisis management and counseling skills. At Providence College, Ryan conducted research on DNA samples from two different species of African fish, leading to a publication and an increasing interest in genetics. In the fall of his junior year, Ryan discovered that the genetic counseling career combined his two main interests:  to support and advise others and the science of genetics. While finishing his undergraduate work, Ryan conducted a 13 week internship with genetic counselors within the Lifespan Network including those employed by Rhode Island Hospital, Hasbro Children’s Hospital, and the Miriam Hospital. Through observing genetic counseling sessions, Ryan gained an authentic look at what it means to be a genetic counselor and pushed him to pursue genetic counseling. In his spare time, Ryan enjoys playing sports, finding new places to eat, traveling, spending time with family, and baking the world’s best banana bread. Ryan is excited to live in another fascinating city and begin his studies at the University of Maryland.

Emma Perez

Emma was raised in Long Island, New York and traveled north to Boston University for her Bachelor’s degree in Health and Behavioral Science where she graduated in December 2015 with honors. During her time at BU, she was a devoted member of the Women’s Rugby Club, worked in a lab studying pheromone detection and behavior, and took part in piloting a program for women facing cognitive difficulties after breast cancer treatment. She discovered genetic counseling her sophomore year and after a few informational interviews with local genetic counselors, she knew this was the path for her. Emma spent her gap year working as a research assistant for the Partner’s Biobank at Brigham and Women’s Hospital where she gained valuable experience talking to patients about their genetic information, obtaining informed consent, and working professionally in a hospital setting. During her time at the Biobank, she was able to shadow cardiovascular genetic counselors and return of research result sessions. She saw first hand the need for genetic counselors in the clinical and research sector and is beyond excited to be a part of this burgeoning field. In her spare time, she volunteered at the Astra Zeneca Hope Lodge and with Crisis Text Line, offering comfort to those who needed it. Emma is looking forward to exploring Baltimore, meeting new friends, finally getting around to watching The Wire, and of course, eating the famous blue crab. In her spare time, she enjoys being outside, playing board games, exercising, baking, and reading.

Rebecca Sheedy

Originally from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Becky graduated summa cum laude from Lebanon Valley College with a degree in biology and a minor in chemistry. Involved in ΒΒΒ, Colleges Against Cancer, and Servants of Christ, Becky remained extremely involved around campus. Becky participated in genetics research involving the origins of functionally repetitive expansins in polyploid plants, specifically Actinidia deliciosa, kiwi fruit! Becky’s love for genetics flourished during an international internship in Ponferrada, Spain during which she was exposed to a number of unique genetics cases. Working as an Emergency Medical Technician, Becky thoroughly enjoys using her knowledge and skills to help others. Becky is excited to begin her career in genetics in Baltimore, Maryland!

Ashlee Vargason

Originally from Humboldt, TN, a small town in rural West Tennessee, Ashlee graduated summa cum laude from Mississippi State University with a B.S. in Biology and minors in Microbiology and Psychology.  Hoping to mix her interests in genetics, education, and psychology, Ashlee discovered genetic counseling provided the patient interactions and meaningful experiences she desired.  During her undergraduate career, she gained many valuable experiences as a molecular lab assistant studying parasitic resistance genes in Glycine max and as a teaching assistant for undergraduate biology courses at MSU.  She also volunteered as a crisis counselor for the organization Crisis Text Line and worked as a genetic counseling intern at the University of South Carolina.  During the internship, Ashlee was able to observe many different genetic counselors and cases in cancer, prenatal, pediatrics, and Huntington’s disease, and this opportunity confirmed that genetic counseling was how she wanted to serve others. In her free time, Ashlee enjoys reading all kinds of books, traveling to new places (but specifically, Disney World), drinking too much coffee, pilates, and laughing with friends and family. Although Baltimore will be a change from her Southern roots, she is thrilled to embrace the city life and honored/humbled to have the opportunity join the Class of 2019 at the University of Maryland.