Summer Scholars Administrative Staff

Claudia Merson, Director of Public School Partnerships

Young in spirit but old in every other body part, Claudia lived many places and did many things before coming to Yale as the Director of Public School Partnerships. She began her career as an educator in NYC, pit stopped in Boston to earn her Masters in Education at Harvard and then promptly left the country for 21 years to live and work in Bangladesh and Switzerland. She has a deep love of young people, a wicked sense of humor and a life-long interest in quality education for all. She is interested in learning new things from anyone and everyone she meets. Currently she is trying to master the central dogma of molecular biology and become a famous cartoonist.

Maria Parente, Pathways to Science Program Manager

Maria is the Coordinator for Science Outreach at Yale University. Originally from Connecticut, Maria received a B.S. from Cornell University, an M.S. from Yale University in Psychology and just obtained her Ph.D. from University of California, Irvine in Education. Because of this last degree, she spent some recent years living in sunny southern California and took several road trips across America. Her favorite things to do are travel, read, and spend time with friends and family.

Dr. Forrester Ashe Lee, Assistant Dean, Multicultural Affairs, Yale School of Medicine

Dr. Forrester Ashe Lee, Professor of Medicine (Cardiology) and Associate Dean for Multicultural Affairs, received his M.D. degree from Yale University School of Medicine. He has co-authored several articles for peer reviewed journals, including, “Common genes contribute to depressive symptoms and heart rate variability: The Twins Heart Study.”

Sarah Wessler, Enrichment Coordinator

Sarah is the Coordinator for Arts and Humanities at Yale University. Originally from the Midwest, Sarah received her BA in Anthropology from the University of Wisconsin. She lived and worked in New York City for 10 years and recently earned her PhD in Anthropology and Education from Columbia University. In her free time, Sarah likes to hike with her dog Mancha, explore museums, ride her scooter through the backroads of Connecticut, and eat pizza.

Will Miller, Residential Director

Will Miller is a college readiness expert and admissions strategist. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Houston, a Master of Education in K-12 School Administration from Prairie View A&M University, and a second Master’s degree in Higher & Post-secondary Education from Columbia University Teachers College. For two decades, Will has helped students from all over the globe earn acceptance into the most selective colleges and universities in the country. He also has extensive experience as a teacher, coach, academic advisor, mentor, and a college administrator. He is a former Princeton University Application Reader, and a former Yale University Associate Dean, Academic Advisor & Fellow of Berkeley College. He is entering his second year as Head of College & Residential Director for the Pathways to Science Scholars Program. Most recently, Will has been appointed as the next Dean of Students at Moorestown Friends School in Moorestown, NJ, for the upcoming 2019-2020 academic year.

Melanie Brady, Day Program Coordinator

Melanie is a graduate student at Yale in Neuroscience. She is from New Jersey, and if she could, would spend all her free time at Six Flags riding every roller coaster possible. She graduated from Wesleyan University, CT, and received her Master’s from Vanderbilt University, TN, (she clearly loved Connecticut too much to stay away any longer). Melanie is a first generation college graduate, and the first in her family to pursue an advanced degree. Melanie currently conducts stem cell research on Tourette Syndrome and enjoys presenting her research around the world. She loves to teach and mentor students, so she was a TA for the Yale Summer Medical and Dental Education Program for the past two summers. Melanie may be caught singing and dancing at any moment, and enjoys painting. She loves Disney movies and believes Olaf is her spirit animal.