Tell a bit about your life before you joined CSU
I am a Colorado native. I grew up in Arvada and I was highly active in music. I attended CSU for my undergraduate and continued to stay here for my graduate degree.
Tell us about your research project and what attracted you to your area of interest
It is truly amazing how organisms begin as a single cell and develop into a fully functioning adult. There are so many processes that must turn on and off in order for development to be successful. I study the processes involved in heart development. I’m investigating a small structure called the cardiac jelly that is present in the earliest stage of heart valve growth. I’ve found that there is a “Goldilocks effect”; if the cardiac jelly is too big or too small, the valve cannot develop properly.
What do you do to relax when you’re not in the lab?
Read, bake and exercise.
What is your favorite thing about the CMB program/CSU/Fort Collins?
Fort Collins is a fun college town. There’s always something to do.
What has surprised you about graduate school?
It is far more difficult than I could have ever imagined.
What has been your biggest challenge so far?
Balancing my education and my personal life.
What do you plan to do after you graduate?
Communicating science in some form. Teaching, acting as a liaison, advising etc.