University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Who we are

Project Leaders


Barbara Hug

Barbara Hug

Barbara is a Clinical Associate Professor in Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) and the PI for Project NEURON. Project NEURON is foundational to her work as it provides a context for collaboration with teachers, scientists, and graduate students to develop and implement curriculum materials that support science learning as described in the national science education reform documents (A Framework for K-12 Science Education, Next Generation Science Standards). Barbara holds a PhD in Developmental Biology and Genetics.




Donna Korol

  • Neuroscience Program, University of Illinois



George Reese

  • MSTE, College of Education, University of Illinois










Recent Contributers

Chandana Jasti

Chandana joined Project NEURON in fall of 2011 and has contributed to developing curriculum, coordinating outreach, and facilitating teacher institutes. She enjoys working closely with scientists and teachers to design ways to engage students in science and critical thinking. In her free time, Chandana enjoys horseback riding, playing tennis, and travelling. She holds an Ed.M. from Harvard University and a B.S. in Biology and certificate in teaching from the University of Illinois.

Hillary Lauren

Hillary started at Project NEURON in 2011 while completing her MS in Biology at the University of Illinois. She has contributed to many projects: developing curriculum and games, building this website, and creating illustrations, animations, and videos. Although she now works long-distance from Seattle, WA, her favorite topics to discuss with coworkers are ecology and the history of scientific ideas. She also has an online portfolio and science blog.

Sahid Rosado Lausell

Sahid joined Project NEURON in fall 2013. She is currently pursuing a MA in Curriculum and Instruction and a Teaching Certification in Secondary Mathematics at the University of Illinois. With her Hispanic background, she hopes to help Project NEURON develop and modify existing curriculum to be more accessible for ESL students. After completing her degree, she is eager to return to her home country of Puerto Rico as a teacher and encourage her students to have fun with math while learning its fundamentals.

Claudia Lutz

Claudia recently graduated from the University of Illinois with a PhD in Neuroscience. She joined Project NEURON in the fall of 2011 as a graduate student volunteer, assisting with curriculum development and presentations at professional development workshops for teachers. Claudia has continued these activities as part of her new position as a Communications Specialist at the Institute for Genomic Biology (IGB). She enjoys finding ways to get the public excited about science, especially her favorite topics: learning, memory, and honey bee behavior.

Sara Patterson Adamek

Sara is currently working toward a master's degree in curriculum and instruction and teachers' certification. While working at Project NEURON, she has found great opportunities to practice developing games, activities, and lesson plans. Much of her work has focused on the Why do honey bees work together? and How do small things make a big difference? units. In the future, Sara hopes to teach science in a rural midwestern high school.

Kristen Talbot

Kristen began working for Project NEURON in May 2011 while working on her Masters in Education and secondary education certificate. She utilized knowledge gained from her education and bilingual/ESL endorsement courses in the development of Project NEURON curriculum materials. Kristen graduated from the University of Illinois in May 2013 and currently holds a high school biology and chemistry teaching position in Boston, MA. Her passion for teaching stems from her of love science and desire to inspire students from traditionally underserved populations.

Robert Wallon

Rob is a graduate research assistant at Project NEURON and is currently working on his master’s degree in curriculum and instruction. Before starting the program, Rob worked for three years as a high school science teacher in Morris, IL. He uses his classroom experiences and his interest in educational technology to create and continuously improve curriculum materials.

Tommy Wolfe

Tommy started at Project NEURON in 2012 while finishing his undergrad in integrative biology and psychology, and he has continued to be a part of the project since starting his Masters in Education. Although he has contributed to the development of many units, he is the primary developer of the Food for thought: What fuels us? unit alongside Claire Scavuzzo. He enjoys producing various creative media and is fascinated by the interactions between the body and the mind.
































Additional Contributors of Project NEURON

  • Alicia Allen
  • James Allen
  • Quinn Baetz
  • Maggie Blattner
  • Jeff Brown
  • Denise Ford
  • Westyn Garber
  • Chris Johnson
  • Inge Karosevica
  • Zach Korol-Gold
  • Ryan Marzolf
  • Kevin Mazur
  • Katherine Mitterling
  • Sharon Morrisette
  • Nick Naeger
  • Jon Ogrodnik
  • Gavin Owens
  • James Planey
  • Sandhya Prathap
  • Claire Scavuzzo
  • Andrew Stengele
  • Patrick Watson
  • Hatun Zengin

Special thanks to Michael McKelvey, for website development!