A native of Parke County, Indiana, I graduated with my Bachelor’s from Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, and while at Purdue, I had the opportunity to research under two professors: David H. Thompson on synthesizing new MRI contrast agents and therapeutics for Niemann-Pick Type C disease and Arun K. Ghosh on synthesizing derivatives of HIV-1 protease inhibitors. I am now in Professor Amos Smith’s laboratory working on creating new CD4 mimetic analogues to combat HIV/AIDS. I spend my free time outside of lab writing stories and watching anime and movies, and I’m always looking for a tennis partner to spar with! Aside from the Mentoring Committee, I am also one of the directors for ACES–one of the biannual outreach programs.
I was heavily involved in a number of organizations at Purdue, and I liked being involved and helping plan and execute events. WiC was easy to get involved with, and because its members are graduate students, the responsibilities and commitments are flexible to reflect the grad school life. The Mentoring Committee (as the name implies) aims to connect graduate students and post-doctoral fellows with potential mentors who can provide additional guidance through their graduate school journey. GEMS is our most prominent event and brings in a variety of speakers from all facets of the chemistry field which could help those who are not sure what direction to go after graduate school. It also helps to build up a student’s professional network which will also be invaluable in the future.