How I got into Science
I grew up in a house deep in the woods and lived just a stone's throw from the beaches of the Long Island Sound. I remember assembling my own "museum" on a large stump in my back yard with cool things I found in the forest and collecting different sea creatures in tidal pools. I liked to discover, identify, and observe. My parents, both people of science, encouraged my curiosity and helped me do my research before I could even read.
In elementary school, most of my sentences began with the word "actually" and ended with a long-winded explanation for the natural phenomena of our world. I loved learning and was constantly searching for more information.
I always loved my science classes the best. Every month, my future changed: meteorologist, chemist, astronomer; whatever subject we were studying at the time.
In high school I took my first biology class. The wonder of living systems always had the greatest hold on me, and now I had the in-depth instruction to get me hooked. When we reached the neural systems unit I found myself left wanting more. So when I took Psychology the next year and loved that, I decided to pursue Neuroscience in college to get my fix.
I'm glad my teenage brain was able to make that connection between psych and bio. I’ve been at Northeastern University a few years now and I've worked in a few labs with some great people and I love neuroscience more than I could have imagined. In my search for a specific niche in my field, I’ve switched my focus from basic biological psychology to neurodegeneration to, finally, the neurobiology of psychiatric disorders. I feel lucky to have always been encouraged in my passion for science and to have met and worked with so many great people who helped guide and develop my interests.
I LOVE MUSIC! For a brief moment in high school, between scientific aspirations, I wanted to be an opera singer and I always did the vocal groups and musicals. Beyond that, I can appreciate almost every genre, but you’ll most likely find me at someone’s basement show in Allston- I love the local bands here in Boston.
I LOVE ART! I swear I’m well rounded! I can and do spend entire days in museums or wandering the city taking photos. I think I understand modern and contemporary art? And although my hands were not made to create, I have a lot of friends who are amazing artists, so I get my fill supporting them.
I LOVE FOOD! I spend all of my money on food- I almost never cook… So that should probably say “I LOVE EATING!”, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
Book: The Pearl by John Steinbeck
Movie: She’s the Man
Show: 30 Rock, Criminal Minds
Music: oldies, opera, and indie
Food: Burritos, Sushi, most food
Drink: Sangria or Gin & Tonic
Activity: hiking, sailing, photography
Coffee, friend or foe: friend til the end
One thing I’m sorry I’m not sorry about
I know I said I like most music, but I never have and never will like country music.
What I look for in a Scientist
My favorite kind of scientist is enthusiastic about their own work and the work of others. After all, who else understands the ups and downs of being a scientist? It’s very important and exciting work we all are doing and I think we owe it to each other to pay attention and promote others who do good science.