Tristan Tiburcio (he/him), MSc Student

trist98 [at] yorku.ca

Tristan was born and raised in Toronto ON. He earned his B.Sc in Biochemistry at York University in 2020, with his thesis on selective RNA chemistry. In March of 2021, he joined the Le and Caputo groups as a masters student in order to pursue organic synthesis, with focus on carbene chemistry. Outside of the lab, Tristan enjoys playing video games, listening to music, going for walks, and making a mess in the kitchen (but usually something good comes out of it).

Dusty Cadwallader (he/him), PhD Student

dustyc94 [at] yorku.ca

Dusty grew up in Port Hardy BC, a small town on the north end of Vancouver Island. He completed his BSc in chemistry at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops, BC and his MSc at Brock University developing stereoselective Birch reduction-alkylations with a chiral auxiliary. In September 2020 he joined the Le group as a PhD student looking to synthesize fluorine containing molecules. Outside the lab his hobbies include recreational power lifting, joining pick-up soccer and volleyball matches, crossing local breweries off his list and cooking up new meat-free recipes (although you can catch him enjoying a steak or chicken sandwich from time to time).


Ali McKnight (they/them), MSc student

mcknighe [at] yorku.ca

Ali graduated from Reed College in 2020 with a B.A. in Chemistry after spending the first two years of their undergraduate degree as a studio art major. During their undergraduate career they dabbled in analytical nuclear chemistry, adding nitrate esters to atmospherically relevant monoterpenes, and putting bismuth in places that bismuth should not be. Outside of the lab they are an amateur artist, avid home cook, and a strong supporter of Trans-Rights and BLM.

Cora Mocanu (she/her), Undergraduate student

coram [at] my.yorku.ca

Cora is a Kinesiology major/Chemistry minor in her final year of undergraduate study at York University. Cora's passion for chemistry was a more recent discovery, only adding her minor in her third year, however it has only enriched her university experience. She hopes to one day work in the healthcare field and keep her curiosity and passion for learning alive. Outside of school, Cora enjoys traveling, spending time with friends, and going on adventures with her dog! 

Temi Ajayi (she/her), Undergraduate student

ajayia1 [at] yorku.ca

Temi is an undergraduate student entering her final year at McMaster University and is studying Chemical Biology. She joined the Le group in the summer of 2021 as a research assistant. She is interested in expanding her knowledge of organic synthetic chemistry to create structures with biological importance. In the 2021-2022 school year she will be working on biomimetic natural products synthesis. Temi aspires to become an R&D scientist in a pharmaceutical company and one day synthesize the cure to cancer. Outside the lab, she enjoys listening to non-fiction audiobooks, watching youtube, and being active in her faith community. 

George Cieszynski (he/him), Undergraduate student

musicgeo [at] my.yorku.ca

George is a Specialized Honours Major in Biochemistry student, entering his second year of study at York University. George is passionate about discovering and learning about synthetic organic chemistry. Future plans include a career in scientific research or academia. Outside the lab and university life, George relaxes by playing 5 different instruments, swimming, and working out.

Lola the Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Lab Mascot

Lola is an organic chemistry enthusiast. Her favourite named reaction is the Balz-Schiemann reaction, because she loves playing fetch with her tennis ball. In addition to fetching, she loves meeting new people and doing tricks (for treats, of course). She is a very good girl.