Message from the Director:

Science Magazine’s May 23 Working Life features the brave personal account of Stephanie Schroeder, C-DEBI’s Education Director, on being open with her diagnosis and how it’s changed her own identity with and advocacy for inclusion. Illustration by Robert Neubecker (

Dear C-DEBI,

Stephanie Schroeder, our Education Director, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis several years ago. In a recent article in Science Magazine’s Working Life, she opened up about the diagnosis, her subsequent struggles, and the decision to leave high-stress Los Angeles for Minneapolis. She provides a brave and honest account of how going public with her MS has made her a better advocate for members of marginalized groups. Stephanie has been part of C-DEBI since 2012, developing our signature education, outreach and diversity programs, including the Community College Cultivation Cohort (C4) REU, the Global Environmental Microbiology (GEM) course, various teacher training seminars, professional development workshops and more. We are thrilled that Stephanie continues to work passionately for our program participants as she balances her personal health with her professional goals.


Jan Amend
C-DEBI Director