Faculty 2021

This is a tentative list of Faculty coming to SigmaCamp 2021

Andrei Antonenko

Lecturer, Department of Linguistics, Stony Brook University

Andrei Antonenko is a lecturer in Linguistics department of Stony Brook University where he is teaching a wide range of graduate and undergraduate courses, from introduction to sociolinguistics to advanced seminars in syntax. He has received an MS in Applied Mathematics and a PhD in Theoretical Linguistics from Stony Brook University in 2012. His area of specialization is formal syntax, and he works on a variety of languages, including Slavic, Germanic, Austronesian, East Asian, Caucasian, and others.






Natalia Ilina


Hello! I am Natalia, owner of Green Ray Studio greenray-studio.com I am based on Long Island, New York and specialize in Personal Brand Photography for entrepreneurs and influencers who want to grow their personal brand. I love to produce photos that tell a story, or portray the joy of discovery, or re-create a particularly memorable point in time.

I received an engineering degree in multichannel telecommunications from Bonch-Bruevich St. Petersburg State University of Telecommunications and have studied professional photography in The New York Institute of Photography.

I proud to photograph SigmaCamp from 2014. I love capturing human relations, characters and emotions, especially when people learn new things, experience joy of discovery and share their lives’ passions. All of those are abundant at SigmaCamp, that’s why I’m so excited to be part of it.


Oksana Ivashkevych

Control Engineer, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Stony Brook University, NY

Oksana is a physicist by training, graduate of Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology with a Master of Science in Engineering Optics and Laser Physics. She currently lives in Setauket, Long Island, NY and works as a Controls Engineer in Brookhaven National Laboratory. Oksana builds beamlines for new NSLS2 synchrotron, an exciting scientific instrument with half a mile in circumference. This instrument is used to peek into atomic structures of new materials and biological samples using the rainbow of X-rays. Oksana also teaches math at School Nova. At Sigma Camp, Oksana will teach the SemiLab Fun of Electronics with Arduino and Algorithms with Python..



Alexander Kirillov

Professor, Department of Mathematics, Stony Brook University, NY

Alexander Kirillov is a professor in the Math Department of Stony Brook University. His research is in representation theory, quantum invariants of knots and low-dimensional manifolds, and Topological Field Theory. He has been working with high school children, teaching math circles and gifted classes since his own high school graduation. In addition to math, he also enjoys hiking, volleyball, and robotics - he is the coach of Islandbots robotics club.


Zohar Komargodski.

Professor, Simons Center for Geometry and Physics, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY

Zohar is a Professor at Simons Center for Geometry and Physics, Stony Brook University, NY. He studied at the Weizmann Institute in Israel, where he received his PhD in 2008. Later he joined the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. In 2011 Zohar returned to the Weizmann Institute, and in 2017 joined the Simons Center for Geometry and Physics. His research is on Quantum Field Theory, which has applications on a wide variety of fields in physics, including Particle Physics and Condensed Matter Physics.


Marina Kreydina

SigmaCamp Associate Director

Marina Kreydina has a degree in Physical Education and Sports Management. Nowadays she is engaged in medical business management. Marina loves specialized summer camps and has been a staff member of a number of them. She has been a member of the Sigma Camp staff since 2013 and is returning this summer.


Mark Lukin

Research Assistant Professor, Pharmacology Department, Stony Brook University, NY

The focus of Mark Lukin's scientific interest are nucleic acids (DNA and RNA) - the molecules responsible for storage and transfer of hereditary information in living organisms. How does DNA get copied? What happens when DNA molecules breaks? To answer these, as well as many other questions, Mark needs to prepare artificial (modified) nucleic acids and their building blocks, the crazy compounds that normally do not exist in nature. The only way obtain them is to do a chemical synthesis, the thing Mark likes the most. Besides that, Mark loves music, history, Greek philosophy, and science fiction. When he was young, he loved to do simple but spectacular chemical experiments. Recently, he realized he still loves to do that. He plans to do some of those experiments in SigmaCamp 2018 with our campers.


Lilianne R. Mujica-Parodi

Lilianne Mujica-Parodi received her Ph.D. from Columbia University, studying mathematical logic and its applications to certain puzzling aspects of quantum mechanics.  She is Director of the Laboratory for Computational Neurodiagnostics, Professor in Stony Brook University's Department of Biomedical Engineering, and Associate Neuroscientist in the Department of Radiology at the A. A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging (Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School).

Lily's research looks at human brain circuits from an engineering perspective, with a focus on the process and dynamics by which mechanisms of network failure lead to psychiatric and neurological diseases. As a hobby, she likes to befriend wild animals (this picture was taken in Australia, with a young kangaroo).


Eugene Pinkhassik

Associate Professor, University of Connecticut

Eugene Pinkhassik graduated from Kazan State University in Russia and obtained his PhD in Chemistry in the Institute of Chemical Technology in Prague, Czech Republic. After a visiting scientist stay in Parma, Italy and a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Colorado, Boulder, he began an independent faculty career. He is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Connecticut. His research interests focus on making nanomaterials and nanodevices with new and superior properties to address current problems in energy-related technologies, medical imaging and treatment, and environmental sensing.



Yuri Salkinder

Managing Director, Equities Technology, Credit Suisse Securities (USA)

Yuri Salkinder’s career spanned academia, telecommunications and financial technology. Yuri started in research in human-computer interaction, then moved on to help create software development tools for Voice response systems. He participated in creation of some standards in wireless messaging. Nowadays Yuri is dealing with messaging of another kind – the one that fuels electronic financial markets. Yuri loves art, music, movies and good math puzzles. Yuri has been a member of the Sigma Camp staff since 2013 and is returning this summer.


Helmut H. Strey

Director of the Laboratory for Micro- and Nanotechnologies (www.streylab.com) and Associate Professor in the Biomedical Engineering Department at Stony Brook University.

Helmut Strey is a Biophysicist who is interested in developing micro- and nanotechnologies for applications in basic and applied research.  Specifically, his lab is working on 1) microfluidic techniques for single-cell cancer genomics, 2) study of DNA dynamics in confined geometries to understand how gene regulation works, 3) developing wireless biosensors for home sleep studies.  Helmut received the Dillon medal for research in Polymer Physics from the American Physical Society in 2003.  He recently converted to Bayesianism and is passionate about making things, Soccer and Table Tennis.  


Inna Sus

Scientific Editor

She was a visiting scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory, where she worked on various projects related to computational materials. Currently, she is a scientific editor reviewing research papers in Physics and Astronomy.






Alexei Tkachenko

Theory & Computation, Brookhaven National Laboratory, NY

Alexei Tkachenko is a theoretical physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory working on nanoscience and in the field called soft condensed matter. He studies problems that range from from living matter (DNA, proteins, membranes) to nanoparticles, plastics and even sand. He also teaches physics at School Nova. At SigmaCamp, Alexei, together with Tanya Zaliznyak, is responsible for the tastiest of all the semilabs, called "The Science of Cooking".


Elena Yakubovskaya

Research Scientist, Pharmacology Department, Stony Brook University, NY
SigmaCamp Director

Lena is a molecular biologist. The primary subject of her interest is  the protein-DNA interactions and Lena has studied many of them using such state-of-the-art techniques as X-rays diffraction, electron microscopy, various spectroscopic methods. However, during her work, Lena came to a conclusion that even the most sophisticated device does not make you smarter: Despite the stunning technological progress, humans’ own brain still is their most powerful tool. The thing Lena likes the most is the company of intellectual like-minded people. Lena and her friends got together every summer to talk about science, art and music. Then they realized that their group would be incomplete without a young generation, so they invited motivated and talented kids to join their company, which they called Sigma.



Igor Zaliznyak

Physicist, Neutron Scattering, Brookhaven National Laboratory, NY

Igor Zaliznyak is a Physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory. He uses scattering of neutron particles to study microscopic magnetism in various materials, searching to discover and understand such properties that would lead to future technological advances. In his everyday professional activity, various aspects of Physics and Mathematics, many of which are already taught in high school, are used in a quest to understand how the nature works. Igor is eager to share his passion for science and enthusiasm for experimentation with students, introducing them to various aspects of Physics and Math that are used in his everyday research. Igor firmly believes that physical and mathematical knowledge and erudition acquired at school age, on par with arts and literature, makes for a unique individual, and provides solid foundation for everybody's success in his/her future life. In his free time, Igor likes to read popular Math and Science books and solve problems, puzzles and brain teasers. He also taught 9th and 10th grade Math at School Nova.


Tatiana Zaliznyak

Pharmacology Department, Stony Brook University, NY

Tanya Zaliznyak is a research scientist in the pharmacology department at Stony Brook University. Her scientific interest lies in the field of structural biology and molecular modeling. She loves to use her knowledge of physics, chemistry and biology in the kitchen, creating tasty dishes that satisfy her passion for cooking.



Natasha Zayfman

Math Teacher, Louis Armstrong Middle School, Queens, NY 

Natasha Zayfman teaches math in a public school in New York City. She was always passionate about math and very curious about how mathematical sense develops in young children. Natasha enjoys watching her students discover mathematical concepts every day. Natasha is also a coach for her school's robotics team. She is very excited to be joining SigmaCamp 2018.  


Anar Amgalan

Postdoctoral scholar, University of Southern California

Anar is a neuroscientist. His background in physics and mathematics helps him solve computational problems arising in human brain at scales from a single neuron to the entire brain network. He also tries to predict what will happen to our brains as we age. In the past, he taught the Codes and Ciphers semilab. This year he will be teaching a semilab on games and how to play your best against the best possible opponent.