• Area of Study Cell Biology, Molecular Biology & Genetics

Where are you from?

I am from North Attleborough, MA – a small town about an hour drive from Boston.

Why did you choose to specialize in Cell Biology, Molecular Biology, and Genetics?

I was inspired by my AP biology teacher to pursue a degree in biology. I specialized in CMG, because I’m interested in researching diseases with molecular mechanisms.

What is your favorite Biology course?

BI 513: Genetics Lab with Professor Celenza! Getting the chance to work with and mutate live yeast culture was extremely fun. I liked that the experiments lasted throughout the entire semester, so we actually got to follow the same yeast and plants throughout a couple months. It was different from your typical science labs that consist of weekly unrelated experiments. Plus, it was nice to see familiar classmates who you’ve taken classes with for the past couple of years!

What kind of research have you done?

I have been a part of Dr. Kelley’s Lab of Autoimmune Diseases at Harvard Medical School/Brigham and Women’s Hospital. We research potential therapeutic targets for chronic kidney disease, acute kidney injury, and lupus nephritis. Strangely enough, my main project was investigating a target ligand for dysferlinopathy (a rare form of muscular dystrophy). The ligand of interest came from our kidney research, but had relevance to the muscle disease – just a cool example of how everything is interconnected in science! You never know what mechanisms are linked beyond the surface. Below is one of my favorite muscle sections, because it looks like a bird!

How did you find your research position?

I found the posting looking for undergrad research trainees through the Weekly Pulse emails – make sure to check your emails!

What extra-curricular activities are you involved in?

I am on the E-Board for the Kidney Disease Screening and Awareness Program. We train student volunteers and provide free kidney disease screenings for communities in Boston. I currently volunteer at Rosie’s Place, a women’s shelter for the poor and homeless. I mainly work in the food pantry, where I help program recipients choose and load food onto their carts. For a bit, I was also involved as a synth-player in BU’s pep-band and lighting coordinator for Stage Troupe!

What is your favorite BU Biology or BU memory?

When BU’s new room assignment program was causing issues for Professor Loechler’s Intensive Genetics course, he sent us a few emails condemning the program using the word, “spiffy,” several times. I don’t know why, but many of us found the emails hilarious.

What are your post-graduation plans?

I plan to take 2 gap years before medical school, so I am looking to do clinical research using the skills and knowledge I’ve accumulated from BU.

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