Hi everyone, I am Samantha Wang, and you can call me Sam. I was born in Jiangxi, China, and currently I am a sophomore at a high school near Boston in the US. I found myself really passionate about science, cooking, literature, and sports. At school, I actively participate in community service, student government, and clubs; I also enjoy playing different sports, such as cross-country, wrestling, and crew. In my leisure, I’d like to write down journals and share them on my Wechat media (follow my account “FoodMemo” if you’d like to know more, or you can scan the QR code below). A fun fact about me is that my interest in biology begins with my love for food and human. As I want to explore my interest in biology, I am so excited about working as an intern at Prof. Fudi Wang’s lab this summer!
Prof. Wang’s Lab: A Place Where My Science Dream Begin
Dear Professor Fudi Wang, Professor Junxia Min, and Lab mates,
Time flies so fast, and I already miss working with you all in Prof. Wang’s lab. Thanks so much for helping and teaching me during my three weeks there! All of you are so intelligent, passionate, and persistent, and I can’t tell you enough how much I loved the friendly and motivated lab atmosphere! You all made my experience there comfortable and delightful.
First of all, a huge thank to Prof. Wang and Prof. Min——not just because of the internship opportunity you provided but also because I was impressed by how advanced the lab is and the strict yet thoughtful leadership roles you both take. I also appreciated how you both thoughtfully discussed my personal goals, future academic interests, and life outside the lab with me. Our discussion of research situations domestically and abroad was especially thought provoking; I was grateful for your distinct perspectives on scientific research and for the opportunity to get advice from experts like you in this field. Also, special shout-outs to Xinhui, Wanru, Jiahui, & Jiaming. Thanks for letting me shadow your work and even allowing me to conduct a part of your experiments, such as the mice surgery and gene-testing. I will remember every lunch we had together on campus and all our silly complaints and laughter. Throughout the internship experience, I am sure I learned a lot, not only about the basics of trace element metabolism and different kinds of experimental procedures, but also about the life of a lab worker as well as a graduate student in a top university. All of these have been extremely valuable experiences for me and made my summer extremely exciting and meaningful.
Happy lab meeting
Before this internship, I worked as an intern in a cancer research institute in Seattle. Although I did some assays like making plasmids and sequencing DNA by myself, I didn’t get the chance to figure out the rationale behind my assay’s protocol since everyone was so busy in that lab. Therefore, one of my biggest wishes before coming to Prof. Wang’s lab was to learn the concepts behind any experiment, and I was so happy when my dreams came true. My senior fellows patiently explained every procedure we did in all of our experiments, such as what is a buffer composed of and why is it necessary in a purification step. Since I had rarely done in-vivo experiments before, all of you gave me detailed instructions and safety guidelines; for example, I learned how to pinch a mouse to avoid being bitten and how to obtain the maximum volume for a blood sample from a mouse’s heart. The meticulousness and extreme attention to detail truly influenced me a lot——to rethink and adjust my learning attitude and methods, and apply this spirit to my future life and study.
I would also like to talk about my feelings after working with you all. As Prof. Min suggested that everyone should pursue work-life balance, she encouraged all to find our interests and ways to relax. At the orientation meeting, I appreciated that Prof. Min pointed out the hardship students might endure in scientific research while advising us on how to reduce stress. I believe this suggestion to be extremely helpful for all students interested in research, which also inspired me to pursue a more balanced life. What’s more, I saw strong cooperation among you guys and it moved me a lot. Although everyone only had limited time and energy to work on assigned projects, you were willing to help each other during assays, such as advising on experiment procedures, discuss data, and share your specialty and knowledge. I believed your sincerity and cooperation contributed to the lab’s success to a huge extent.
Lab-mates cooperate to discuss and mimic a cell signaling pathway
Furthermore, I was impressed by your attitude towards failure and high self-motivation. For instance, as the Western Blot didn’t bring my senior fellows an expected result concerning the expression of mitochondria complex in sample mice, I saw you work together to discuss steps that needed improvements, such as using a younger mice-sample and running the gels for a longer period of time. Then, you repeated the experiments and continuously ameliorated your methods, which I believe is an essential element to successful scientific research. Your research routine showed me the importance of plan and logistics, and the spirit of never-giving-up.
I was grateful that I was able to study in such an advanced lab at Zhejiang University and learn from my excellent lab mates and teachers. Your persistence and spontaneity truly inspired me to continue pursuing scientific research. To conclude, I want to again thank everyone in this lab for your patience and sincerity, and I also want to honor all researchers who selflessly contribute themselves to the peace and progress of all mankind.
Discuss with Prof. Wang
I will come back and visit you in the near future! Please be safe and keep in touch. I will, of course, miss you all so much!