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The Graduate School of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research
1000 East 50th Street
Kansas City, Missouri 64110
Phone 816-926-4400

R. Scott Hawley, Ph.D.
American Cancer Society Research Professor
Investigator, Stowers Institute for Medical Research

Dr. R. Scott Hawley is widely recognized as an expert in Drosophila genetics, chromosome biology, and meiosis. He has authored over 115 articles and six books. Scott was appointed as an American Cancer Society Research Professor in 2005 (reappointed in 2010), inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2006, and elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2011. He has won numerous awards for his teaching, including the Genetics Society of America's award for Excellence in Education in 2008. Scott received a B.S. in Biology from the University of California at Riverside in 1975 and his Ph.D. in Genetics from the University of Washington in 1979 under the supervision of Laurence Sandler. This was followed by a Helen Hay Whitney Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Institute for Cancer Research in Philadelphia. In 1982 he joined the faculty of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City and then, in 1991, he moved to the University of California at Davis as a Professor of Genetics. In 2001 he was recruited to the faculty of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research in Kansas City. Scott believes that there are three functions of a scholar: to learn, to write, and to teach. He is committed to excellence in all three pursuits.

Ana J. Pedraza, Ph.D.
Head of Student Affairs

Ana J. Pedraza received her Ph.D. in Cell Biology from Yale University in 2007 in the laboratory of Dr. Graham Warren. She has a master's degree in Biochemistry from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and a bachelor's degree in Biochemistry from Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. After receiving her Ph.D., Ana moved to Kansas City to pursue a postdoctoral research position in the laboratory of Drs. Joan and Ron Conaway at the Stowers Institute for Medical Research. In 2010, Ana accepted the position of Head of Student Affairs. Although she has given up the bench, she has a strong commitment to fostering science through the next generation. She hopes that her broad experience in an array of research positions and institutions will be a valuable tool to help future scientists navigate their way through graduate school and the next steps of their careers.


Susan Weigel
Head of Operations

Susan Weigel joined the Stowers Institute for Medical Research in 2000 and managed the executive office until 2010 when she was named Head of Operations for The Graduate School. Prior to joining the Stowers Institute, Susan worked with the executive office and the foundation of Aventis Pharmaceuticals and its predecessor companies in Kansas City for eleven years. Susan holds a B.A. in education from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. She enjoys combining her background in education with her experience in administration to support the predoctoral researchers.









Kim Dziedzic
Senior Administrative Assistant

Kim Dziedzic joined the executive office of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research in 2007 and moved to her current position in 2010. Her previous experience includes four years at the Lee's Summit, Missouri School District and 17 years at Pfizer Animal Health. Kim received a B.S. in education with a concentration in Biology from the University of Central Missouri. The combination of Kim's educational and work experiences makes her a valuable resource for the predoctoral researchers.


Lori Vitale
Academic Coordinator

Lori Vitale serves as the academic coordinator for The Graduate School. It is her responsibility to serve as liaison with the state of Missouri as well as coordinate future accreditation efforts. Lori holds a Bachelor’s of Journalism and a Bachelor’s of Art in History from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She has a master’s degree and an education specialist in higher education administration. She has worked in higher education for 14 years at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and Research College of Nursing.