Lab webpage: forthcoming
Hometown: San Diego, CA
Undergrad: Bachelors in Molecular and Cell Biology from UC Berkeley.
Work experience before MLML: I worked for several years as a systems engineer and an account manager in the tech industry. More recently, I’ve worked at Moss Landing Marine Labs with Nick Welschmeyer on the ballast treatment testing project.
Q: Why did you decide to pursue marine science?
Marine science has been a steadily growing passion of mine over the last several years. As an undergrad, I always knew I loved biology, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on what I wanted to do with it in terms of my future. When I lived in San Diego as a kid, I would go surfing every chance I got and loved being near the ocean. I didn’t put two and two together until later, when I began volunteering at the Seymour Marine Discovery Center in Santa Cruz and I realized how fun it was to constantly learn new things about the ocean. During that experience, I realized I had to pursue marine science.
Q: What experiences and opportunities have shaped your path to get you where you are now?
Growing up in San Diego, I was never too far from the ocean. Everyday during the summer, I would head to the beach to go surfing. This, coupled with my volunteering experience at the Seymour Center paved my path towards MLML, where I found a job opportunity working on the ballast treatment testing project.
Q: What are you studying and why is it interesting and important to you?
As a first year student, I haven’t yet completely formulated a thesis question. However, I’m interested in the ballast treatment testing research and I’d like to make a contribution towards combating the growing threat of invasive species. I’m hoping to find ways of making our testing methods more efficient and effective as these tests become more in demand.
Q: What are you hoping or planning to do when you finish?
I am hoping to work in the field or perhaps continue on to pursue a PhD.
Q: What are the most rewarding and challenging aspects of graduate school?
It’s a little intimidating because you’re surrounded by incredibly bright and talented people who are experts in their field. You feel a bit of pressure to keep up with everyone. But that also creates an incredible environment to share and soak up knowledge from all aspects of marine science.
Q: What advice do you have for someone who wants to get in to marine science?
Talk to as many people as possible and try to get some hands-on-experience. Don’t be afraid to approach any and everyone in the field and ask them questions about what they do.