Hometown: Pennsauken, NJ
Undergraduate school: University of Pennsylvania, 2005
Degree/field of study: Molecular Biology
"I decided I wanted to do research after taking molecular biology classes where I learned how understanding molecular changes in cancer has led to very directed therapies. I had some ideas about what I wanted to do in grad school, but it changed once I got here.
"When I was reviewing different graduate schools, I looked at multiple factors, most importantly location and breadth of research. I loved Ann Arbor because it has everything a big city does but on a smaller scale. I knew Michigan was right for me when I came to interview. The professors I met with got me excited about the research here.
"My PIBS year was great. I loved the curriculum. It’s another reason I chose Michigan—the coursework is very flexible, so Michigan fit me perfectly for that. The cores and resources available here are also outstanding. There is never a technique or reagent that you can’t find someone to help you with.
"It was hard at first to decide on lab rotations, but after arriving and talking to students and professors it became fairly easy. You are given a lot of freedom on the number of rotations you do so you can keep going until you find a lab, or stop when you’ve found the one."My lab is a very independent lab—we all have projects that are our own and we are very independent in our research. But when we get together in lab meeting, everyone is excited and willing to help you."