Conference Speakers

Sonya Inderbitzin-Brooks, MD


Originally from Annandale, Virginia, Dr. Sonya Inderbitzin-Brooks attended Delaware State University for her undergraduate degree. While in attendance, she was a MARC U*STAR scholar before receiving her undergraduate degree in Biology in 2014. She then attended West Virginia University School of Medicine and received her medical degree in 2018. She is currently an Internal Medicine Intern with an interest in pursuing a Hematology/Oncology fellowship upon completion of her residency. Dr. Inderbitzin-Brooks was the first-place winner at RUSRC’s very first conference in 2011. Her paper presentation was titled, “The Road to Success: How the Contributions of Frederick Douglass and Nelson Mandela Paved the Way to Success for Blacks.”

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Kimele Persaud, PhD


Dr. Kimele Persaud (née Gray) graduated from Delaware State University in May of 2012 with a BS in Psychology. At DSU, she was a Ronald E. McNair Scholar and an Honors Program student. As an undergraduate, she conducted several research projects under the supervision of Dr. Brian Friel. Her research projects were “Birth Order and Educational attainment: Phenomenon or Reflection of Parenting Style” and “Effects of Biasing Information and Conscious and Unconscious Deliberation.” She presented these projects at a number of research conferences and received several awards including the second Regional Undergraduate Research Conference (2012), for which she was the first-place winner. Her paper presentation was titled, “The Effect of Paternal Parenting Stress on Child Cognitive Development at 24 Months of Age.” She went on to earn her doctorate degree in Cognitive Psychology at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, in May 2018. Her research program involved developing computational methods to understand the influence of real-world knowledge and expectations on visual working and long-term memory. As a graduate student, she received several prestigious fellowships including the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship and National Science Foundation Integrated Graduate Education and Research Training Fellowship. Dr. Persaud is currently a post-doctoral fellow at Rutgers University, Newark, working with Dr. Elizabeth Bonawitz in the Computational Cognitive Development (CoCoDev) lab.