This past week I went to one of our (now previous) doctoral candidates dissertation in which she presented all of the research she has worked on throughout her time working toward her Ph.D. I was very excited to go as I had never seen a dissertation before and barely had an idea of what it was. It was interesting to see the entire process of how that works and the amount of information you must know off the top of your head is crazy. It also was really inspiring to see how much Kim has accomplished in her time here and see her present the ideas behind her research and the actual results from each one. She even inspired me to begin thinking of my own questions and things I would like to research. In fact, I even reached out to the head of our lab about ideas for a possible future study and we plan to discuss them when he returns to campus!
Even more, being surrounded by recent graduates and upcoming seniors and seeing Kim’s dissertation really made me start thinking about my own future in regard to research and graduate school. I know as a sophomore, I still have time to make big decisions. But I think it is important to start thinking about that now and having at least half-ideas of the direction I want to take my life in the future.