Monday, January 30, 2012

My primers worked! My PCR scheme worked! My gel worked! It was an awesome day in the land of research. Last semester I was doing a genotypic identification project on the 800+ strains of yeast that the lab uses... this semester I'm doing a protein-protein interaction study with yeast-2 hybrids. It's funny how things accelerate quickly once you know some basics, no?

Anyways, the lab is awesome. I came in just as things were getting started and rounded out the lab "staff" to 3.5 (there was a guy who only did summers, the PI, and the lab tech when I first started). Now we're up to 6.5 and have a bona fide "media preparer" working the lab. It's an exciting place to be, and it's fun work. The PI is on the younger side and is wonderful to work with, always explaining things, making jokes, and making sure we understand.

I didn't know research would be fun. I started out looking for research because "you're supposed to do research" and was quite honestly intimidated by it. Now that I'm actually doing it with some success, I can't believe I didn't start sooner. There are lots of people "volunteering" in the research lab who not only get to park for free and earn a free meal when they put in more than four hours, but they get to learn all kinds of interesting research skills. How are more people not doing this?

Oh that's right... not everyone is nearly as interested in this stuff as I am. Anyways. This Friday there's a research symposium at my university - an undergraduate event put on by undergraduate researchers FOR undergraduate research hopefuls. It's supposed to provide an opportunity for people to ask questions, talk about their research, and help other people get into the lab. In that vein, I guess I'm here talking about it in order to encourage other people who may not have figured out "the research thing" to jump in and give it a shot.

So, who else is doing research, and what are you doing?

(PS - Thank you Dr Fizzy for the shout out! And WELCOME! to my new followers who came here via her blog.)

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