Announcing 2024 Kempner Post-Baccalaureate Scholars

May 28, 2024

Four outstanding recent college graduates join post-bac program to pursue intelligence research

A collage of four headshots, clockwise from upper right, smiling woman in white shirt, man in bright green shirt, woman in striped shirt, man in black shirt.

The 2024 Kempner Institute Post-Baccalaureate scholars are, clockwise from upper left, Haylin Diaz, Lyndon Lam, Leilany Torres Diaz and Maceo D. Richards.

Cambridge, MA– The Kempner Institute for the Study of Natural and Artificial Intelligence at Harvard is pleased to announce the inaugural scholars awarded placement in the Kempner Institute Post-Baccalaureate Program. The 2024 post-bac scholars are Haylin Diaz, Lyndon Lam, Maceo D. Richards and Leilany Torres Diaz.

Designed to support students seeking access to advanced coursework and research opportunities, the Kempner’s post-bac training program was launched in November 2023 in partnership with Harvard Griffin’s Research Scholar Initiative (RSI), which is housed within the Harvard GSAS Office for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging (EDIB).

All four students are recent college graduates pursuing training in preparation for applying to PhD programs in the study of intelligence in natural or artificial contexts. Post-bac scholars undertake extensive mentored research and coursework, and receive two years of full funding and professional development opportunities.

Meet the 2024 Kempner Post-Bac Scholars

The Kempner’s faculty and research work align perfectly with my interests of using technology, more specifically AI, to make education more accessible.

Haylin Diaz ’23, Lehman College, City University of New York, Kempner Institute Post-Bac Scholar

My formal education in data science and neuroscience cultivates an interdisciplinary perspective on building wiser AI, and this program will be great for me to explore such methods before beginning a doctoral program.

Maceo D. Richards ’24, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Kempner Institute Post-Bac Scholar

This program is a perfect fit for my interest in combining neuroscience, psychology, and artificial intelligence to delve deeper into the complexities of the human brain.

Leilany Torres Diaz ’21, University of California Davis, Kempner Institute Post-Bac Scholar

I chose to come to the Kempner to develop and mature my own research philosophy [and] improve my researching skills.

Lyndon Lam ’23 , California State Polytechnic University – Pomona, Kempner Institute Post-Bac Scholar

About the Kempner

The Kempner Institute seeks to understand the basis of intelligence in natural and artificial systems by recruiting and training future generations of researchers to study intelligence from biological, cognitive, engineering, and computational perspectives. Its bold premise is that the fields of natural and artificial intelligence are intimately interconnected; the next generation of artificial intelligence (AI) will require the same principles that our brains use for fast, flexible natural reasoning, and understanding how our brains compute and reason can be elucidated by theories developed for AI. Join the Kempner mailing list to learn more, and to receive updates and news.


Deborah Apsel Lang | (617) 495-7993 |