Staff Profiles

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Cecilia Fura

Cecilia Fura, Senior Manager

As VSPA Senior Manager, Cecilia is the primary contact for VSPA.  She oversees the daily operations, supervises office staff, and conducts special projects and initiatives. 

Cecilia will serve as the point person for VSPA in the interim while the Vice Chancellor for Research Office launches a search for a new Director.

Phone: (510) 643-9681

Phone: (510) 643-9681

Marci Burke

Marci Burke, Program Coordinator

As VSPA Program Coordinator, Marci coordinates VSPA events and manages the appointment process for postdocs and visiting researchers.

Phone: (510) 643-9681

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Student Team

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Will McCarthy is a freelance journalist, audio producer, and second year student at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism whose work has been featured in the New York Times, KQED’s The California Report, and KCRW’s Unfictional. At the VSPA, he helps with copy-editing and creating content for the website. In his spare time, Will rides his bicycle as far as he can.

Ryan Chang


Ryan Chang is a VSPA Program Assistant studying Economics and Data Science at UC Berkeley. During his spare time, he enjoys watching YouTube videos on investments, technology, and watches.  


Rui Hong Guan


Rui Hong Guan is a second year student from the Bay Area studying Civil Engineering. In his free time, he likes to play volleyball and badminton. He is also an inspiration-driven artist, meaning he draws when inspired to.  When he does decide to pick up his pencil he enjoys figure drawing.

Ellie Matsuno


Ellie Matsuno is a Program Assistant at the VSPA. She is studying Civil Engineering at UC Berkeley. In her free time, she enjoys reading, playing video games, and hanging out with friends.


Bella Sanford


Isabella Sanford is an English major in her second year at Berkeley and is VSPA's Social Media Intern. Her hobbies include playing in her band, content creation, and journaling.

Sama Zazai


Sama Zazai  is a second year student pursuing an intended major in Nutritional Sciences on the pre-med track. Outside of academics, her interests include playing classical piano, longboarding, and writing poetry.