I am officially a University of Washington employee this summer! I will be working as a lab assistant this summer in Ferric Fang’s lab at University of Washington until early September. I am stoked. I’ve been working in the lab for exactly a month now and it has been nothing but positive.
First, I’m very excited to be in Seattle. I weigh location very heavily when choosing a school or establishment to work at, so, naturally, Seattle was a top choice for my destination this summer. I came to Seattle for a few days in November for the ABRCMS conference. Yes, I was a totally noob tourist, but I instantly knew this was a place I could fit in. Seattle is beautiful—so much green everywhere, such a cool city, so much to explore, moody vibes. I love it. Very similar to the bay area in California.
Second, I’m really looking forward to the research I’ll be doing this summer. My previous project at UCSB involved searching for peptides that can permeate bacterial outer membranes in order to facilitate antibiotic delivery. I learned a ton from that project, but I wanted to get more involved in some basic microbiology research. My current project at UW is just that. I am currently working on characterizing nitric oxide targets in Staphylococcus aureus, a Gram-positive bacteria. I’ve also never worked with Gram-positive bacteria so it’s been eye-opening learning how to handle different types of bacteria. We’re studying the target thymidine kinase, an enzyme involved in the salvage pathway of pyrimidine synthesis. It’s pretty cool because I just learned about this exact pathway in one of my courses, which means I’m actually applying what I learned in class, in real life. Imagine that…
Lastly, I love UW. The campus is gorgeous (see photos), the people are incredibly kind, and the microbiology program is ranked fourth in the nation. There are some amazing researchers here!! It feels great to be connected to so many resources and be a part of a school that is so heavily focused on research.
In a nutshell—really enjoying my time here this summer. I’m growing as a person and a scientist. I’m feeling more confident than ever that a research career is what I’m working towards.
^^^the magical house I’m subleasing at this summer