We are now on week six of the INBRE internship. We have been able to meet many different people and hear about their experiences. Dr. Anderson spoke to us about how to educate the public and younger students (elementary to high school) about science and research. He also showed us the Anatomage and explained how it works and the impact it could have on the learning opportunities for high school and college students. Another guest speaker was Dr. Van der Schyf. He spoke to us about how to prepare to apply and enter into graduate school. His was a great talk to hear, especially after hearing from ISU graduate students about their experiences. I was very interested in hearing from the graduate students. It was nice to hear the perspective of students currently in their programs still. Also, it was nice to be able to pick their brains and ask their advice about graduate school routes. So far, there have been some really educational and informative talks.
On the research side of it, we learned about new instruments. The first was the Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy instrument. Dr. Holman, one of the mentors in the lab, was able to show us the protocol of how to run the NMR. I have used the NMR in certain chemistry labs I have taken in the past and also learned how to read the spectrum from the NMR already. So, learning the NMR was a refresher and more in depth and was a great learning experience. The next instrument that I had exposure to was the Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectroscopy (GC/MS). Once again, this was a refresher for me since I used the GC/MS in a chemistry lab. A fellow student took time out from his research schedule to walk us through the protocol and show us how to work the instrument.
To be able to have access to these types of instruments is so amazing. Not only am I able to use them for lab courses, but to also be able to use them for independent research projects is such a great opportunity. I feel so grateful that ISU and INBRE make such an opportunity.