Aidyl Gonzalez- Serricchio
Testing metabolic rate of biofilm in Gruta do Natal Author: Mara Leite

Aidyl Gonzalez- Serricchio

Molecular Geneticist, Educator, and Solar System Ambassador

Childhood Curiosity to Scientific Stardom

meet aidyl

Dr. Aidyl Gonzalez-Serricchio, a Puerto Rican scientist and educator, actively engages in research at the California Institute of Technology. Simultaneously, she serves as the Outreach Director and Senior Researcher at the International Institute of Astronautical Sciences. Pronounced “Ideal,” Aidyl delves into astrobiology, investigating soil health and microbiomes in extreme environments, ranging from the Arctic to an Azores lava tube cave. Her research portfolio also extends to neurodegenerative disorders, with a specific focus on dementia using nematodes. As a member of the Explorers Club, NASA Solar System Ambassador, and amateur magician, Aidyl captivates audiences with her distinctive blend of science and enchantment. Beyond her scientific endeavors, she is a fervent advocate for Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging (JEDIB). She holds advisory and executive roles in organizations such as SparkReach Leadership and STEAM Superheroes, demonstrating a comprehensive commitment to advancing scientific exploration and societal progress.

Childhood Curiosity to Scientific Stardom
Nominated by: Dr. Shawna Pandya, FI'19
Class of 2024 Location USA
Follow aidyl's work:
Kenya research expedition
Kenya research expedition Author: Marc Blum

As an explorer, I embody the relentless pursuit of scientific excellence with the mantra, ‘¿Por qué no yo? ¡Mírame hacerlo!’ (Why not me? Watch me do it!) This guiding principle, instilled in me since childhood, fuels a journey from a fascination with a cockroach’s life cycle to becoming Dr. Aidyl Gonzalez, a scientist making waves in various scientific frontiers and education.

My impact extends far beyond the laboratory, taking me to extreme environments in Poland, the Arctic, Kenya’s Masai, the seas, and the lava tubes in the Azores. Here, I conduct forward-thinking research, not just in isolation but as part of a global citizen science initiative where individuals aged 5 to 105 actively contribute, collectively working towards preserving our planet.

Traversing these harsh terrains, I research neurodegenerative disorders, explore how microgravity can treat them, and transform arid Earth and Martian simulant soil. These successes are not just scientific triumphs; they represent opportunities for students worldwide to actively participate in solving real-world problems.

“¿Por qué no yo? ¡Mírame hacerlo!” (Why not me? Watch me do it!)

- Aidyl Gonzalez-Serricchio
Getting ready for high G training
Getting ready for high G training Author: Anthony Navarro

My development of the Soil Science Citizen Science initiative is more than an educational initiative—it’s a call to environmental empathy and collective action to protect our beautiful Earth. Beyond the scientific realm, my persona as an amateur magician and member of the Magic Castle is an unexpected facet, a testament to my mission of making science captivating and breaking stereotypes.

Author: Marc Blum

Born in the Bronx, New York, to parents who came from Puerto Rico due to Operation Bootstrap, both with education limited to middle school, I overcame poverty, violence, and people’s misconceptions about my abilities and potential. A severe learning difference identified in college challenged the notion that I was ‘dumb.’ My mother’s pursuit of education, earning her high school degree in her forties, became a beacon of resilience that fueled my journey.

My aspirations extend beyond personal accomplishments. I envision a world celebrating diversity, where equity is a reality, and inclusion is an action. Through exploration, we advance scientific frontiers and foster a global community united in our commitment to our planet and each other. The impact of my work ripples through local and international communities, contributing to a brighter, more inclusive future.

never stop exploring