Knowing Neurons

Spanish Translation Project

Knowing Neurons is currently partnering with the UCLA Brain Research Institute and the UCLA Spanish and Portuguese Department to translate the Knowing Neurons site and content into Spanish in order to make neuroscience more accessible to the public. Representation and accessibility in STEM is one of our foundational missions here at Knowing Neurons and we thank UCLA for aiding us in this effort. Below are the talented UCLA student translators that have contributed to this project.

Project Description

The translation of Knowing Neurons articles into Spanish was done by UCLA students enrolled in two Spanish community-engaged learning courses: M172XP Latinos, Linguistics, and Literacy and M165XP Taking it to the Streets: Spanish in the Community. Through outreach projects like this, undergraduate students in these courses connect theory with practice by using their cultural knowledge and linguistic skills to make educational materials and resources accessible to the Spanish-speaking community. In this particular project, students with a passion for both Spanish and neuroscience translate articles from English into Spanish, interview Spanish-speaking neuroscientists (see podcast section), and conduct workshops for Latinx youth on the path to earn a STEM degree. 

The translations were reviewed and edited by a linguist, Dr. Carla Suhr from the UCLA Department of Spanish and Portuguese, and a neuroscientist, Dr. Rafael Romero-Calderón from the UCLA Neuroscience Interdepartmental Program. Generous support was provided by the Brain Research Institute (BRI) at UCLA.

This department has been granted free access to the Phrase Academic Edition, an academic program designed for universities with translation courses.


In September 2023, we started a collaboration with Professor Beatriz Martín Gascón from Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM). In this new phase of project we have focused on the importance of internationalizing our translations and on enhancing collaborations between students at UCLA and in other Spanish-speaking universities. 

The translations done by the students at UCLA are now checked by undergraduate and masters students in two Academic Spanish classes. Specifically: the class on Academic Discourse from the undergraduate degree in Hispanic-German Studies and the class Academic Spanish from the masters degree on European Intercultural Studies. After each round of translations, the students at UCLA and UCM meet online to conduct a group feedback session where they discuss the translation conducted. 

Furthermore, in this new part of the project, we have emphasized the creation of lesson plans. Students at UCLA develop lesson plans around one of the translated articles and they conduct an outreach activity locally in Los Angeles. The creation of these lesson plans is supervised by two graduate students who are members of the Knowing Neurons team. 

Faculty Advisors

Carla Suhr

Professor Carla Suhr is a faculty member of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at UCLA. She teaches Cognitive Linguistics and Community-Engaged Learning and mentors students conducting Sociolinguistic Justice field research.  She earned her Ph.D. in Intercultural Communication and Cognition from Universidad Complutense de Madrid. She strives for the advancement of knowledge and research through the collaboration between the academia and the community and through the creation of interdisciplinary projects. In her personal life, she enjoys hiking, climbing, and sharing good food and music with family and friends.

Rafael Romero

Rafael Romero is currently the Associate Director of the undergraduate Neuroscience Interdepartmental Program (uNSIDP) at UCLA. He teaches a wide range of courses that range from introductory classes in neuroscience to advanced seminars for honors students. He also coordinates the neuroscience outreach initiatives for the uNSIDP and Brain Research Institute, such as Project Brainstorm and DOPA team. He earned his B.S. in Biology from La Universidad de Los Andes (Bogotá, Colombia) and his Ph.D. in Neuroscience from UCLA. When not thinking about the brain he enjoys reading, cooking and tinkering around the house.

Beatriz Martín Gascón

Beatriz Martín Gascón holds a Ph.D. in Languages and Cultures from the University of Córdoba. She is currently an Assistant Professor at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in the Department of Spanish Language and Literary Theory. Her teaching portfolio includes courses in pragmatics, academic Spanish, academic discourse, and advanced grammar. Throughout her doctoral studies, she conducted research in cognitive linguistics, focusing on conceptual metaphor and metonymy, verbal irony, and the conceptualization of emotions. Additionally, she possesses expertise in designing and implementing innovative pedagogical materials with an emphasis on film, literature, and feminist studies in the foreign language classroom.

Translators and Editors 2023


Isha Das

My name is Isha Das and I am currently a fourth year at UCLA, with a major in Psychobiology and minor in Spanish. I am excited to be working with Knowing Neurons because I aspire to work in the medical field one day, either as a pediatric gastroenterologist or pediatric orthopedic surgeon. I hope to use my Spanish skills as a doctor so I can better serve my patients and non-english speaking communities. Because my own parents are immigrants, I am passionate to help provide equal medical care to non-English communities as well. I am also on the UCLA Dance Team, host a health and wellness podcast, and love to work out and cook!

Diana Rejón

Diana Rejón is an undergraduate student at UCLA majoring in Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics. She is passionate about public health and plans to utilize her bilingual skills as a future oncologist to advocate for accessible care in underserved communities. Her background as a first-generation student has motivated her to continue pursuing higher education and embracing her cultural roots.


Giorgia Salani

Giorgia es una estudiante italiana que cursa el segundo curso del Máster en Estudios Interculturales Europeos, un programa de doble titulación entre la Universidad de Ratisbona (Alemania) y la Universidad Complutense de Madrid. En sus estudios, Giorgia se centra en lo intercultural, en la comunicación y en la política internacional. Sus pasiones más relevantes son la lingüística y el ámbito de la educación. De hecho, trabaja como voluntaria en una ONG cuyo objetivo es ayudar a los estudiantes del instituto a desarrollar sus habilidades de pensamiento crítico a la hora de elegir su propia trayectoria académica/profesional a la vez de acabar la selectividad.

Aileen Mostajo Ley

Aileen is a student of the Universidad Complutense Madrid. She is currently in her first year of "Hispanic-German Studies" which is a degree in cooperation with the University of Regensburg. Her experience as a volunteer of the European Solidarity Corps (ESC) lead her to be more aware about the importance of cultural exchange and inclusiveness. Therefore she would like to work in the sociocultural field in the future. In her free time she really enjoys travel, writing and dancing.

Amalie Sandhop

Hello! My name is Amalie and I study German-Spanish-Relations in the UCM, Madrid.

Lisa Scherer

Hello, my name is Lisa, I'm 22 years old and I'm from the south of Germany. I'm in the first year of university studying "Estudios Hispano-Alemanes" at Complutense University of Madrid.

Tamara Đurić

Tamara is originally from Serbia and is a German philologist. She's a lover of languages (she speaks 4 fluently), cats, nature, and art. She studied German philology at the University of Kragujevac (Serbia), the University of Trier, and the University of Bamberg (both in Germany). She has worked as a teacher, event manager and librarian. Additionally, last year she assumed the position of assistant director at cinEScultura, a Spanish film and culture festival, and was part of the youth jury at "Kurzfilmwoche," a film festival in Regensburg. She currently resides in Madrid and is pursuing a Master's degree in European Intercultural Studies at the University of Regensburg (Germany) and the Complutense University of Madrid (Spain).

Juan Rottenwöhrer Suárez

Masters student in European intercultural studies at the Complutense, Université Clermont Auvergne and Universität Regensburg. I speak Spanish and French as mother tongues, English and German at C1-C2 level and some Italian. I have experience as a translator for Médicos del Mundo (Doctors of the World). I am also a FIDE chess master.

Rabea Dauwe

Rabea Dauwe is an undergraduated philology student in “Estudios Hispano Alemanes” at UCM (Universidad Complutense de Madrid) and UR (Universität Regensburg). Currently she is studying in Madrid. In her free time she likes cooking and traveling.

2023 Spring Translators

Ángela Conejo-Zamora

My name is Ángela Conejo-Zamora, I am a 4th year undergraduate student at UCLA majoring in Psychology and minoring in Spanish. I’m looking forward to working for Knowing Neurons as I enjoy translating content and being able to help my community have access to scientific knowledge that they didn’t have before. Outside of my academics I enjoy watching horror movies, hanging out with my cat and watching random documentaries.

Aurora Nieves

Aurora Nieves is a third-year undergraduate student at UCLA pursuing a major in Spanish, Community and Culture; with a minor in Chicano Studies and Public Health. She was involved in multiple research at UCLA. Knowing Neurons gives her a sight to the work in translation and science outreach and provides her with a unique opportunity to see first hand research articles and material. This experience gave her the opportunity to merge her passions for science, research, Spanish and Community. She plans to attend Public Health School after graduation.

Lucy Balish

Lucy Balish is a third-year undergraduate student at UCLA pursuing a major in Psychobiology and a minor in Spanish. Her academic journey has been enriched by her involvement in multiple research labs at UCLA where she has gained valuable experience in scientific investigation. Moreover, her dedication to serving the underserved Spanish-speaking community in healthcare settings has been shaped by her volunteer work as a medical assistant both in Nicaragua and at Cedar Sinai in Los Angeles. Lucy's affiliation with Knowing Neurons in the areas of translation and outreach has provided her with a unique opportunity to merge her passions for science and Spanish. She plans to attend medical school after graduation and will continue advocating for cultural sensitivity and improved accessibility to healthcare resources.

Simona Simeonova

Simona is currently a fourth-year undergraduate at UCLA studying Physiological Science with a minor in Spanish. Working as a student translator for Knowing Neurons has allowed her to achieve her goal of making science and medicine more accessible to disadvantaged communities. After graduating, she is pursuing a Master of Healthcare Administration at the University of Southern California to continue working toward making healthcare more equitable and affordable.

Keya Vijapure

Keya Vijapure is an undergraduate student at UCLA majoring in Physiological Sciences, and minoring in Spanish. Her interests in reproductive endocrinology have prompted her to apply to medical school after graduation. She is passionate about advocating against disparities in the education and healthcare field and therefore enjoys translating articles to bridge the language barrier in scientific knowledge. Outside of school, she enjoys baking, reading, painting and gardening.

2023 Winter Translators

Claire Saguy

Claire is an undergraduate student at UCLA majoring in Labor Studies, a new interdisciplinary concentration in the Social Sciences, with minors in Spanish and Food Studies. She feels very lucky to take such diverse and overlapping globally-minded classes, from Urban Agriculture to Community Organizing. The Spanish translation initiative of Knowing Neurons, to help equalize access to funds of scientific knowledge, aligns with her post-graduation goal of working with community organizations to alleviate economic disparities and social inequalities on a local and national scale. She is passionate about writing, both academic and creative, and considers it a powerful tool for social change. She hopes for her Spanish translations of Knowing Neurons articles to help do just that!

Elisa Hernandez

Elisa Hernandez is currently a 4th year student at UCLA, majoring in Biology along with a Spanish minor. After graduation, she plans to pursue a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies and become a PA. She enjoys learning about biology and psychology as well as reading in Spanish. She is really excited to be involved in a project that combines both of her passions; science and Spanish. Apart from learning, Elisa finds joy in community service. Outside of school, she devotes her time to volunteer work at a local hospital, cooking, and exploring new things.

Photo of Julia Clark

Julia Clark

Julia is an undergraduate student at UCLA studying Cognitive Science with a minor in Spanish. She is a member of a lab studying human memory and aging. After graduating she hopes to travel the world and explore her passions.

2022 Fall Translators

Chenyang Lai

Chenyang is an undergraduate student minoring in Spanish at UCLA. As a STEM major, he loves all flavors of science and hopes to use his Spanish skills to contribute to scientific education.

Maia Jackson

Maia is an undergraduate student at UCLA studying Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology with a minor in Spanish. She is a member of a lab studying clear cell renal cell carcinoma and hopes to one day further her scientific education with a PhD program in cancer biology or related fields. Working with Knowing Neurons in translation and outreach has inspired her to use her Spanish to influence science and continue working to make information more accessible to disadvantaged communities.

Samantha Arauz

2022 Spring Translators

Reyna Ediss

Reyna Ediss is an undergraduate student at UCLA majoring in Spanish and Community and Culture. Her experience volunteering at the Children’s Hospital of Orange County has prompted her to apply to medical school after graduation to become a pediatrician. With the lack of bilingual physicians, she has become motivated to assist the underserved Spanish-speaking community and is passionate about advocating for the accessibility of health care resources to the Latino community. Due to her devotions and motivations, it has inspired her to major in Spanish and Community and Culture to demonstrate empathy, cultural sensitivity, and to communicate with the Spanish-speaking population as a medical physician.

Estefany Ochoa Alvarez

Estefany recently graduated from UCLA, receiving her bachelor’s in Spanish, Community and Culture, and Political Science. She is intrigued by the brain and enjoys learning about science as a hobby. Estefany became a translator for Knowing Neurons in Spring 2022 as part of a community outreach class led by Dr. Carla Suhr.

Keya Vijapure

Keya Vijapure is an undergraduate student at UCLA majoring in Physiological Sciences, and minoring in Spanish. Her interests in reproductive endocrinology have prompted her to apply to medical school after graduation. She is passionate about advocating against disparities in the education and healthcare field and therefore enjoys translating articles to bridge the language barrier in scientific knowledge. Outside of school, she enjoys baking, reading, painting and gardening.

Mariangelina Martínez

Dalí Jiménez

2022 Winter Translators

Elmer Sandoval

Elmer Sandoval is a UCLA student majoring in Spanish Community and Culture and minoring in Chicana/o and Central American Studies. Elmer migrated from El Salvador and became a first-generation college student. His goal is to develop community programs that benefit and improve Central American Communities. After graduation, he hopes to obtain a PhD in education and gain experience to return to El Salvador and help improve rural communities through education.

Dalí Jiménez

2021 Fall Translators

Adriana Perez

Adriana Perez is a UCLA student majoring in psychology and minoring in community engagement and social change. She is a research assistant in a clinical psychology lab that researches racial/ethnic disparities that exist in youth mental health services. After graduation, she hopes to obtain a PhD in clinical psychology to conduct research on culturally-adapted therapy and provide mental health services to racial and ethnic minority communities

Fernanda Lomeli

Fernanda Lomeli is currently an undergraduate student at UCLA pursuing a bachelor's degree in Spanish, Community and Culture and is also part of the Medical Spanish Interest Group. Her goal is to become a medical interpreter with the neurology department as well as encouraging those with epilepsy to study and move on, since she is epileptic herself. She would also like to help those with epilepsy know the meaning of technology and importance of the RNS device as to how it can be a great cure and change in life.

2021 Spring Translators

Jenna Hartstein

Jenna Hartstein is an undergraduate student at UCLA studying Human Biology and minoring in Spanish. She is a member of an on campus lab where she is studying the impact of stress processes (depression, anxiety, early life adversity) on perinatal outcomes and infant health. She enjoys connecting the realms of neuroscience with her Spanish minor as a student translator for Knowing Neurons. After her graduation, she hopes to continue her studies in medical school.

Angela Hernández

Angela Hernandez is a student at the University of California, Los Angeles studying Spanish, Community, and Culture and Education. She received an A.S. in Mathematics from Santa Monica College. Angela is Mexican from Zapotec heritage and a first-generation college student. After UCLA, she hopes to enroll in graduate school and obtain her Ph.D. in Education.  Outside of school, Angela spends a lot of her time camping and hiking at National Parks.

Jayleska Johnson

Jayleska Johnson is pursuing a bachelor of science in Cognitive Science and a bachelor of the arts in Spanish, Community and Culture at UCLA. She is interested in developing community programs that benefit and improve Latinx and minority communities in California. Jayleska is also interested in the development of the mind and how societal, and economic circumstances can affect how people respond to situations in life. She hopes to integrate her interests through the creation of community programs to improve Latinx and minority communities.

Daniela Semerjian

Valia Gregory

Sebastián Martínez

Delaney Ivey

Angela Johnson