Over the course of the summer I feel that I have gained a lot of valuable experience working in my lab. I’ve been part time in research for a little over a year but this summer was my first time working “full time” and it definitely changed my perspective on research . I was a lot more involved than I usually have the time for during the school year, and it really reinforced the hard work and thinking that goes into research. I always knew that research took time and that your first try isn’t going to go how you wanted, but this summer I also learned that your second, third, fourth, and fifth try is probably not going to go how you wanted. I had to quickly learn how to adapt the experiment or the reagents used or even the direction of the study. At first it was frustrating to change my intended plan but with time I learned how necessary it is. The entire point of research is to discover what you don’t know and to do so you have to be flexible. Something that helped me stay on task was continuing to read literature on new findings. It helped to see what others in the field were doing and to possibly apply some of their techniques. And a successful experiment was always a motivator or highlight of a long week!
The most valuable part of the HSRF was the community and resources. We were always encouraged to speak to mentor scholars or look into other fellowships and that was helpful to me because I didn’t even know about some of those things. It has given me the opportunity to look into other ways I can continue to conduct my research here or abroad. It even got me interested in opportunities outside my field such as artistic internships. As for the other students I got to work with, I was always interested to hear about the other research going on at Pitt or UPMC. It reminded me of how much research really is emphasized at Pitt. After the fellowship is over, I will continue to work in my current lab and further study various components of hemostasis. I will be reading more literature to design experiments and then carrying them out. Professionally, I will look into attending more developmental workshops Pitt has to offer. I think it would be helpful in both communicating my research and as a physician.