Hello, I’m

Alan Marnett

Ph.D. scientist and business owner at the interface of science, technology, and education.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Neuroscience research focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms of learning, memory, and neuronal plasticity.

University of California, San Diego

Biochemistry research explored the mechanism of acetylcholinesterase, a critical postsynaptic enzyme primarily found at neuromuscular junctions.

University of California, San Francisco

Chemistry, molecular biology, and virology research resulted in successful design and development viral protease inhibitors.

Trinity University

Synthetic chemistry research pushed the limits of metal-catalyzed intramolecular cyclization, creating a 20-membered ring--the largest ever at the time.

Detroit, born and raised


San Antonio

San Diego

San Francisco


A Bit About Me

I was going to be the next Andre Agassi... the hairline was as close as I got.

Luckily, my DNA saved me. As the son and grandson of chemists, genetics guided me into science and the lab. I started my research in synthetic chemistry, then expanded into pharmacology, biochemistry, virology, ultimately leading to neuroscience at MIT—exploring learning and memory at the molecular level.

Always a believer that the highest scientific endeavor is to improve society, I fused my scientific research with a vision to improve the way we communicate, learn and grow. Initially focusing on the scientific community, I came to understand that the problems I sought to solve existed in all disciplines and, tragically, began much earlier than I expected. In response, BenchFly grew from a peer-to-peer platform between scientists around the world to one that now drives collaborations and builds relationships between students of all ages and the workforce they will one day join.

Here are three things that describe my work and my beliefs.

1) I’ve worked in some of the top research institutions in the world (UCSF, MIT). I’ve published my work in some of the most prestigious journals in science (PNAS, Nature Structural & Molecular Biology). I’ve had the opportunity to start and build a company.

2) Magic happens at the interface of disciplines—using strategies and approaches from one industry to diagnose and solve problems in another.

3) There is tremendous satisfaction in building things that solve problems—turning what was once an idea into something real:

• when I needed a computer with maximum processing power on a budget with minimum flexibility, I built one myself—even though ‘changing the batteries in a mouse’ was the extent of my computer knowledge at the time.

• when I experienced the growing divergence between the skills students learn in the classroom and those they need to succeed in today’s world, I left the lab to build a platform that realigns the classroom with the workplace.

If you are a parent, employer, or concerned citizen that wants to participate in re-shaping the future of education in our country with results, reach out so we can solve this problem together.


Words to Live By


Let’s Connect

LinkedIn is the easiest way to get a hold of me. Drop me a line.