Brackenridge Fellowship: My Cohort

What I hope to learn from other Brackenridge recipients  

Hi everyone, here are my thoughts when it comes to what I would like to learn from my cohort and the rest of my peers in the Brackenridge fellowship. Last summer I participated in another research fellowship which only had students from the biological field. During that program I liked to learn about the dynamic of other people’s labs. I have noticed that dynamic can vary drastically between labs. I would like to learn the same from my peers in the Brackenridge fellowship who also work in a lab setting. When it comes to those in the fellowship who work outside the biological field and STEM in general, I would like to learn how research is conducted in those areas. I mentioned this in my introductory post, I would specifically love to hear the different research methods used in the humanities, especially historical research.  

Similarities and Differences between student projects  

Due to the nature of this fellowship, I believe that the major differences between student projects lies in the area of research and the methods used in that research. Because the Brackenridge fellowship is an interdisciplinary program, we have research being done in a multitude of disciplines. I have talked with students who study artificial intelligence, American literature, protein structure, and gender studies. However, between those who work within the same field there can be drastic differences. For example, I have also talked to numerous students who also work in the biological sciences, but they use drastically different methods that suit their project.  

There are also a lot of similarities between this year’s fellowship participants. Many, but not all, of the participants share very similar goals. These include either pursuing some kinds of higher education such as medical school, master’s program or a PhD program. A lot of us are also looking into research related careers. Another big similarity between our cohorts are the reasons we got into research and pursued these kinds of fellowships. For many of us this stems from a deep interest of our respective fields. Personally, I like being puzzling over the many things we so not understand, and I think a lot of my peers would share that same sentiment.  

Benefits/Obstacles of working with people across disciplines  

I really like the concept of the Brackenridge fellowship, In that it brings students researchers together who never might have met otherwise. There are many benefits that come with interacting with people outside your discipline, such as being able to communicate your work with minimal jargon. Another benefit is simply meeting new people, allowing us to strengthen our communication and collaboration skills. An interdisciplinary program like this is crucial for a world which is becoming more interdisciplinary. When it comes to obstacles I have honestly not really run into any. I believe that meeting with this group of students 1 – 2 times per week is really cool and beneficial, that is why I enjoy how the Brackenridge fellowship is set up. There really are no downsides to meeting up with people and discussing your work and goals.  

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