Meet the Staff
Irving Epstein, Henry F. Fischbach Professor of Chemistry and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor, has taught at Brandeis since 1971. He helps to select and advise Science Posse Scholars, collaborates on developing and improving program elements, works with the Posse Foundation, raises funds and advises other institutions that seek to implement the Science Posse model on their own campuses.
Melissa is an associate professor of biology actively engaged in science education research. Since the program’s inception, Melissa has worked with the Science Posse Scholars as the summer immersion program director, and as an adviser to the scholars and program mentors. Melissa is developing key elements of the Science Posse program for other Brandeis students in an effort to recruit and retain more STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) students.
Lori Tenser joined the Brandeis community as dean of academic support and advising in August 2022. She is not new to the Brandeis community, as she had previously worked at Brandeis in several roles from 1989-2005, including three years as assistant dean of student life. Lori served at Wellesley College as the dean of first-year students from 2005-18, and later as the associate dean for academic integration and advising. With experience in both student and academic affairs, Lori’s career has been focused on the connections between academic and co-curricular experiences, and on empowering students to embrace their identities and achieve their aspirations.
Lori earned her BA in psychology at Washington University in St. Louis, her master's degree in education from Harvard University, and her PhD in higher education from Boston College. Her dissertation, focusing on the experiences of students who have taken a gap year, was entitled "Stepping Off the Conveyor Belt: Gap Year Effects on the First-Year College Experience."
Lori lives in Needham with her husband, Alan, and their dog, Gracie. Their three grown children are also connected to Brandeis, having spent their toddler years at the Lemberg Children’s Center. Lori loves gardening and singing, and she recently started playing the electric bass with her band, Some Assembly Required.
Judy is the executive administrator in the Office of the Provost, and she provides administrative support for the Posse Scholars Program. Judy joined Brandeis University in 2013, and she regularly contributes to other university initiatives. Before arriving at Brandeis, she worked in corporate risk management and early childhood education.