Rylie Walsh, Ph.D.
Rylie Walsh, Ph.D.Fellow since 2019
Rylie Walsh completed her Ph.D. work in Avi Rodal’s lab at Brandeis University before joining the Advanced Microscopy Fellowship program in 2019.

Rylie’s thoughts on the program:

I started as an Advanced Microscopy Fellow after I completed my PhD in late summer 2019. Microscopy has always been my favorite part of being a scientist, and it’s been wonderful having the chance to focus on microscopy entirely. I’m amazed at how much I’ve learned (and continue to learn) from Jennifer and her team. I’ve gained a much more thorough understanding of the theoretical and practical foundations of microscopy applications ranging from the basics to advanced techniques. I’m also learning a lot about the day-to-day operations of running a multi-user core facility, like training users in a wide variety of modalities & applications, purchasing equipment, and understanding how to handle booking and finances.

My two particular interests are microscopy education and a super-resolution technique called structured illumination microscopy (SIM). So far, I’ve had the chance to create lectures, design workshop exercises & tutorials, lead discussion groups and help plan and execute an online lecture series. One of my goals for the next year is to design a lecture and accompanying lab exercises for biologists as an introduction to SIM. I know that the skills and tools that I’m building in the NIC with Jennifer will benefit me throughout my career, and it’s really fun and rewarding to get to work with people who are as passionate about microscopy as I am!


Talley Lambert, Ph.D.
Talley Lambert, Ph.D.Fellow, 2014-2015
Talley Lambert completed his PhD in Neurobiology in Dan Storm’s lab at University of Washington, and did a post-doc at Washington State university before joining the Advanced Microscopy Fellowship program in 2014.

Talley’s thoughts on his experience with the fellowship program:

During my postdoc, I attended Jennifer’s Quantitative Imaging course at Cold Spring Harbor. There I discovered my passion for all things microscopy, and applied for the Advanced Microscopy Fellowship program at HMS the following year. During the fellowship, I was able to immerse myself in microscopy: forming a solid theoretical foundation in quantitative imaging, as well as a breadth of practical techniques including live-cell imaging, FRET, FRAP, confocal, TIRF, and super-resolution microscopy. In addition, I learned a lot about the day-to-day operations and considerations when running a very heavily used imaging core facility. I was particularly involved in optimizing acquisition and reconstruction protocols for structured illumination microscopy. Additionally, I developed multiple lectures for on-campus workshops and our course at Cold Spring Harbor.

Starting in 2015, I accepted a position as a Research Associate in the Cell Biology Department at HMS, where I manage a small core specializing in advanced optical imaging techniques including 3D-Structured Illumination super-resolution microscopy, as well as two light sheet microscopes: a diSPIM, and a Lattice light sheet microscope. Jennifer’s post-doctoral fellowship was an incredible experience that provided me with more resources than I could have hoped for to feed my desire to learn more about microscopy and core facility management.

Michael Weber, Ph.D.
Michael Weber, Ph.D.Fellow, 2016-2018
Michael Weber worked in light microscopy core facilities and completed his PhD in Biology in Jan Huisken’s lab at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, Germany, before joining the Advanced Microscopy Fellowship program in 2016.

Michael’s thoughts on his experience with the fellowship program:

In March 2016, I started working as an Advanced Microscopy Fellow in Jennifer’s core facility, which is located on a historic, yet international and diverse campus that hosts numerous renowned researchers. From the outset, I was profiting from the team’s extensive expertise in quantitative light microscopy and teaching – and their willingness to share that knowledge. Thanks to Jennifer’s unique fellowship program, I significantly expanded my expertise in these areas and learned advanced techniques such as spinning disc confocal and total internal reflection microscopy to great detail. Teaching was a heavy focus of my work. Not only did I train and advise researchers in the use of advanced microscopy techniques, I also gave lectures, taught workshops and contributed to our famous yearly “Quantitative Imaging” course in Cold Spring Harbor. Furthermore, I truly appreciated the freedom of pursuing my own projects. This included designing and building a compact light sheet microscope for research and education, designing and integrating four new Nikon widefield microscopes for various applications, as well as writing scientific reviews and book chapters.

In December 2018, I finished my postdoc position in Jennifer’s facility. In January 2019, I took on a new role as Field Application Specialist for the invol3D Flamingo project ( There, I’ll collaborate with researchers using traveling, powerful light sheet microscopes. Throughout the process of transitioning into my new job, Jennifer was – and continues to be – very supportive. The hard and soft skills I acquired during my time in her facility, as well as the academia and industry connections I built there, will be of tremendous help in my new role.

Anna Payne-Tobin Jost, Ph.D.
Anna Payne-Tobin Jost, Ph.D.Fellow, 2015 - 2019
Anna Payne-Tobin Jost completed her PhD work in Orion Weiner’s lab at USCF before joining the Advanced Microscopy Fellowship program in 2015.

Anna’s thoughts on her experience with the fellowship program:

The Microfellows program gave me the opportunity to learn about all aspects of core facility life, from user training and consultation, to microscope maintenance, to grant writing and management. On the technical side, I’ve learned the theory and practice of a wide variety of advanced microscopy techniques, including FRAP, ratiometric imaging, single-molecule imaging, SIM, and STORM. I’ve tested, reinforced, and deepened my understanding by training users in each of these techniques.

I love teaching, so I spent a lot of my time as a fellow working on our microscopy workshop program at HMS. I lectured in our workshops, created new lectures and lab exercises, and coordinated workshop logistics. When I want to learn more about a topic, I develop a lecture about it; there’s always an enthusiastic and appreciative audience for microscopy lectures at HMS. I’m also very much involved in our annual Cold Spring Harbor course, and in the months leading up to the course, I help to write lab exercises, prepare samples, and coordinate equipment.

In addition to teaching, I worked on several other projects as a fellow, including automation of quarterly microscope inspections, methods to measure phototoxicity, and a review on validation and bias in microscopy experiments.

In 2019, I accepted a position as Associate Director of Imaging Education in the NIC@HMS. In my new role, I’ll build on my work as a fellow by continuing to expand our workshop program and develop new microscopy education offerings for HMS and beyond. My time as a fellow was incredibly rewarding and productive, and I’m looking forward to sharing that experience with the next generation of Microfellows.

George Campbell, Ph.D.
George Campbell, Ph.D.Fellow 2018-2019
George Campbell completed his Ph.D. work in Sandra Encalada’s lab at The Scripps Research Institute before joining the Advanced Microscopy Fellowship program in 2018.

George’s thoughts on his experience with the fellowship program:

During my Ph.D. research, I used light microscopy and image analysis to answer questions about the cell biology of neurons. Learning about microscopy and helping other researchers with that knowledge were my favorite aspects of the Ph.D. experience.

The Advanced Microscopy Fellowship program allowed me to use my research experience to advise HMS researchers in their diverse light microscopy experiments. By assisting researchers with a variety of experimental setups, the breadth and depth of my understanding expanded beyond what was required of my Ph.D. research. Using theoretical microscopy knowledge to better train, advise, and teach researchers was a wonderful challenge.

In December 2019, I finished the Advanced Microscopy Fellowship program. In January 2020, I took on a new role as a Senior Research Technologist in the Cell & Tissue Imaging Center at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN. My experience as a Microfellow with Jennifer has helped me to transition from being an experimental biologist who fancies microscopes to becoming an experimental microscopist who fancies biological experiments.