• Area of Study Neurobiology

Where are you from?

Saharanpur, India

What is your major and how did you choose it?

I am currently pursuing a BA/MS in Biology. My BA degree comes with a specialization in Neurobiology (NB). I think choosing Biology was a no-brainer for me. It is a topic I have always been interested in, partly because of my parents’ influence. Even when I was in middle school, my dad would take out his old medical school books and talk to me about interesting cases he had read about. My interest was piqued then, and I suppose the appeal of Biology never left me! The Neurobiology specialization, however, was a decision I made much later. The classes at BU, specially BI230 and NE333, in addition to neuroscience seminars I attended, inspired me to pursue Neurobiology!

What is your favorite biology course?

It is so hard to pick one but I think my favorite Biology course was BI 230: Behavioral Endocrinology with Dr. Brett DiBenedictis. I don’t think I stopped raving about that course the whole semester. This class was my first introduction to the world of Endocrinology and combined with Professor DiBenedictis’ teaching style, it quickly became a class I looked forward to. Additionally, it was also the first class that pushed me to read scientific articles and made me feel more at home giving a presentation. Every week we would have to read a paper and a student group would present it with active participation from the class. I loved it.

What kind of research do you do?

Since my junior year, I have been somewhat involved in research with Dr. Haya Herscovitz in the Department of Physiology and Biophysics at BU’s School of Medicine. This past spring I was lucky enough to receive UROP funding for my research. The research is related to cardiology with a specific focus on HDL Biogenesis. We specifically look at the effect of artificial sweeteners and food colorings on HDL Biogenesis.

How did you get your research position?

The BU Biology website is an amazing resource! I simply looked up topics that I was interested in and contacted the PIs through their listed emails.

How has your research tied into your classroom learning?

As my classes have progressed, my research experience has been instrumental in helping me understand the techniques often talked about in lectures. I have really felt the importance of practical experience during some of the classes I am currently taking, especially NE 528: Human Brain Mapping. An enormous component of this class is reading and discussing scientific articles in addition to in-class data analysis activities. I truly believe that spending time with my mentor and being exposed to some of her knowledge has made this class an easier transition for me.

What extracurricular activities are you involved in?

During my time at BU, I have been a part of many things. However, currently I spend my time serving as an International Peer Mentor, Biology Peer Mentor, CAS Academic Ambassador, and Learning Assistant for BI 315: Systems Physiology. Additionally, I am also the Director of Social Advocacy in the Undergraduate Student Government and the interim Vice President of BU Hindu Students Council.

What is your favorite dining spot on or around campus?

Piattini on Newbury Street. During my freshman year, this was the first place I had an official group dinner with new friends, and it has stuck ever since!

What are the best places on campus to study or relax?

Stuvi2 26th floor, CAS 5th floor, the BU Beach, and the Garden area behind FitRec.

What is your favorite BU memory?

So many to pick from! But one that always brings a smile to my face is Holi on Cummington Mall with all of BU. It is the most diverse and fun day and I’m so happy I have had a chance to be part of it.

What’s one BU tip you wish you knew sooner?

Your professors WANT to talk to you! Do not shy away from these interactions; they are some of the most inspirational and important ones you will ever have!

Also, your advisors are the best resource you’ll have. They always have your back!

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