Highlights 2012

Rising Senior
Virginia Tech
CEINT Research Site: Meyer Lab, Duke University
Projects Title: Investigating  Nanoparticle Toxicity using Caenorhabditis elegans

Participating in the CEINT REU provided me with an opportunity to not only further my experience conducting nanoparticle research but to also get a new perspective on the potential implications of nanotechnology.  I enjoyed meeting new people and listening to them discuss how they progressed with their own research helped me to formulate my own research goals more appropriately- an experience which will surely help me in the future.  The laboratory research and presentation experience provided through CEINT will certainly help me as I adjust to graduate research in my future.  I was glad to meet fellow undergraduates as well as graduates and professors, get a feel for a university I was interested in attending for graduate school, and gain more experience working in a field I love.

Career Impacts and Plans

This REU encouraged me further to pursue nanotechnology as a particular interest for future research in grad school.  Having this internship probably contributed to my being awarded the Ryan Fellowship for exploration in nanoscience at Northwestern, the university which I am attending for graduate school.  This summer I will begin work at Northwestern early and hope to evaluate my options for future research as I begin my graduate research- possibly in nanotechnology.

Rising Junior
Chemical/Environmental Engineering
University of Southern California
CEINT Research Site: Marr Lab, Virginia Tech University

The atmosphere of the CEINT REU program was an excellent learning environment for me to grow as a researcher. I was fortunate to work with brilliant mentors at Virginia Tech, each of whom were supportive and knowledgeable. I enjoyed exploring interdisciplinary projects amongst my research team where I became acquainted with a variety of nanotechnology issues in our air. This exposure sprouted my desire to learn more, granting me independent research on the side from my faculty mentor. Taking initiative to design the project from start to finish, I was able to challenge myself and sharpen my creativity, patience, and persistence. This unique opportunity, along with my outdoor expeditions with new friends, made the entire program valuable and memorable to me. The skills that I have acquired during those ten weeks will transport and carry with me into my future career.

Career Impact and Plans

The multiple CEINT faculty research presentations and EPA tour reaffirmed my passion towards resolving environmental pollution and toxicity issues in our society. My two research projects, one applicable to developed countries and the other to those developing, inspired me to think critically about combating environmental implications on a global scale. That is my aspired career goal. I plan to continue working in research and pursue a Masters degree in Environmental Engineering. Perhaps I will concentrate my studies in nanotechnology, or even conduct experiments in mesocosms in the near future.