Starting in Tehran, moving to Florida as a child and ending up at MIT and Harvard, with a detour to Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar and again as graduate student, Pardis Sabeti never seems to stop moving.
Beginning with a love of mathematics, Sabeti moved into genetics, where she has developed novel methods to detect natural selection. Her innovative approach of applying these methods to the entire human genome led to her current work as head of the Sabeti Lab at Harvard University. There, she uses computational methods and genomics to understand mechanisms of evolutionary adaption in humans and pathogens.
Creativity is her hallmark: To attract women into the sciences, she produced a series of music videos, featuring wellknown Boston-area scientists, and a new-student orientation video for Harvard, featuring juggling faculty and students. And she is the lead singer and guitarist in the alternative rock band Thousand Days.
Sabeti has been recognized by both the National Research Council and L’Oréal as a model for women in science. She has been chosen as a researcher by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; invited as a panelist to the World Economic Forum at Davos, Switzerland; and named by CNN as one of eight “geniuses who will change your life.”
For her extraordinary energy, intellectual curiosity, and creative application of the life of the mind to the challenges of everyday living, Grinnell College is delighted to honor Pardis Sabeti.