what we do ...


Hi! We’re the BCS REFS.

REFS is a confidential, student-run, peer-to-peer Resource for Easing Friction and Stress for grad students at BCS. We are here to listen, help you solve problems, and get you in touch with other resources at MIT that may help you address any issue you face during your time here. No matter what issue you are experiencing (work-related stress, relationship-related stress, loneliness, imposter syndrome, and anything else), we’re here for you. 


Contact us at bcs-refs@mit.edu or reach out to any one of us individually if you would like to talk. We look forward to hearing from you!



Anna (Anya)



Anna (Anya) is a 4th year graduate student working with Ev Fedorenko and Nancy Kanwisher. She studies the brain basis of language processing and how it relates to other cognitive functions. In her free time, she enjoys going on nature walks and solving nonograms Anya also writes for the MIT Grad Blog and used to be one of its editors.





Hi! I'm a second year in the Saxelab. Feel free to reach out for anything. There doesn't need to be a problem, but there can be. Happy to listen, chat, solve problems or sit in silence.





Djuna is a second year graduate student in the Tsai and Kellis labs, interested in using genomics and computational tools to unravel Alzheimer's disease heterogeneity on the single-cell level. In her free time, she enjoys cycling (ask her about the MIT cycling team!), FaceTiming her parents, who live in Germany, and day-dreaming about a post-Covid vacation to the Alps...





Katya is a 3rd year graduate student working with Mriganka Sur. She studies the structural and functional effects of experience dependent plasticity in shaping neural circuits in the visual cortex. In her free time, Katya likes to go rock climbing, social dance (in the times before covid), and read escapist fiction.





Danielle is a 5th year graduate student in Ed Boyden’s lab. She works with C. elegans, studying multisensory integration in decision-making and testing molecular tools for imaging neural systems. In her free time Danielle enjoys reading thrillers, listening to podcasts, and spending time with her husband, baby, and dog (all acquired during grad school—ask her about work-life balance!)