Nilsa R. Graciani, Ph.D. is a native of Puerto Rico. Dr. Graciani graduated from the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras with a Bachelor’s in Science with a concentration in Chemistry. She continued her studies in Organic Chemistry at Texas A&M University, where she earned her Ph. D. After graduation, she held senior scientist positions in the pharmaceutical industry. Her research included work with peptides and small molecules in various therapeutic areas including cancer, cardiovascular, inflammation, infectious diseases and women’s health. She has been a speaker at scientific and health conferences. Nilsa joined Esperanza College of Eastern University in July 2011 as an Adjunct Professor. In October 2013 she assumed the position of Director for Middle Level Education, Math and Science. Currently she is the Director of STEM and Medical Assisting. In addition, in 2019 she became the Chief STEM Officer of Esperanza.
She is on the Advisory Board of both the Young Professionals Network at the Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Cities Changing Diabetes as well as the Fox Chase Cancer Center Community Advisory Board. She is on the Occupational Advisory board of two local high schools. She is also part of the Hunting Park Science Network. She was instrumental in running the first robotics club at Esperanza College of Eastern University and was honored in 2014 as Community Partner of the Year by the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers. In 2015 she received Esperanza’s Step Above award. In 2018 she was nominated for the Al Dia News “Women of Merit” award. In 2017 she spearheaded the “Minorities in Health Sciences Symposium” at Esperanza College which has become a yearly event she organizes. Her role at Esperanza allows her to impact younger generations by sharing her passion and developing in them a love for becoming professionals in STEM and health related fields.
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