Meet our Team!

Let us introduce ourselves!

It Started as a podcast

On the 12th of April 2021 the very first episode of The Struggling Scientists Podcast aired. This was just after we were allowed back to work in the Netherlands after the first Corona lockdown. The Worst Moment to start doing something next to the start of the 4th year of your PhD. But that did not stop Suzanne and Jayron!

They had a dream to make a Science Podcast for other Scientists. Life as a Scientist/PhD student can be very hard, and they wanted to Make Science Fun Again. For others, but also for themselves.

But it became so much more!

Soon the dream started growing. First with a Social Media Platform full of memes made by Jayron, then a webshop with Science Inspired designs made by Suzanne. All of that led to them officially registering The Struggling Scientists as a Business in January 2022.

The Struggling Scientists has continued to grow more than they ever imagined. And they are even looking for teammates now!

The Struggling Scientists

Our Team members:

Meet Suzanne van Wouw

Founder, Podcast host, and Creative Design Specialist

Meet Suzanne van Wouw

Suzanne is a now fifth year PhD student in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, working really hard on getting her Thesis finished! She loves all things Metabolism but has also found a love for Science communication and loves being creative. One of the things she loves most about being a Struggling Scientists is learning new skills on the go.

Meet Jayron Habibe

Founder, Podcast Host, and Social Media specialist

Meet Jayron Habibe

Jayron is a 5th year PhD student in the Netherlands who is going to be defending his PhD this Summer (Finally). He was interested in most things related to metabolism and cardiovascular function but now he’s focussing promoting science communcation through The Struggling Scientists. Jayron primarily focusses and enjoys managing the Struggling Scientists social media, making way too many memes, and writing blogs and the newsletter.

Meet Taja Železnik Ramuta

Content Creator and Writer

Meet Taja Železnik Ramuta

Taja is a microbiologist by training. During her PhD studies, she focused on investigating the antimicrobial and anticancer properties of placental membranes. She is also interested in establishing 3D cellular in vitro models that better recapitulate the organs of interest. She delved into this topic during her time as a Fulbright scholar at Harvard Medical School, where she attempted to tackle the development of kidney organoids. Currently, she is a research assistant professor at the National Institute of Chemistry in Slovenia, and most of her workdays revolve around developing new synthetic biology tools to improve cancer immunotherapy. Taja is a strong advocate for science literacy and enjoys communicating science through blogs and podcasts. In her free time, she likes to read absurd amounts of books, craft ugly platters and mugs from clay, travel around the world as much as possible, and enjoy a good rock concert.

Our Guest Writers:

Meet Ilya Shabanov, MSc

Guest Blog writer

Meet Ilya Shabanov, MSc

Not your average scientist. I spent 12 years in industry, co-founded a brain training startup NeuroNation ran a web design firm and only at 36 decided to do a PhD in biology.At this point I didn't know much about biology - yet 6 months later I had a paper in peer review and a glowing recommendation from my supervisor.My secret to learning very fast is not talent.It's "Knowledge Management", something I did routinely as a CEO.You and I play chess with the same pieces, right? But who wins? The person with a better strategy - continuously & predictably. Research is not different.I decided to document my method and in December 2022 launched a Twitter account to showcase some of the techniques that helped me. It grew rapidly to over a 1000 followers in just the first few weeks.Today I am part time PhD student in ecology at Victoria University in Wellington and part time entrepreneur – showing you how to organise your knowledge, use modern tools and AI to thrive in academia.