Congrats Jenna

Great news from one of my former summer research students; Jenna will be entering SUNY Upstate‘s medical program this fall.

Jenna was in my first crop of summer research students at SUNY Brockport; (check that link, she’s in one of the tie dye lab coats). She was actually a student at MCC participating in the CSTEP program designed to help students find enriching research opportunities.

Jenna worked on an instrument-design project where she used CAD design and 3D printing to build a multi-chamber medium-wash “thingy” (technical term). It was a project in collaboration with Dr. Wenyi Feng at SUNY Upstate who was working on a DNA sequencing project. The wash chamber that Jenna developed was designed to streamline the purification steps in order to minimize potential sample damage due to user interaction. An early single chamber prototype looked like this:

The “green thing” represents the DNA-containing hydrogel that could be damaged by too much user-manipulation.

Jenna applied to a number of programs and had several offers to choose from. SUNY Upstate was her first choice. She let me know that undergrad research seemed to play a big role in her successful application process:

 I cannot thank you enough for your letter, and for being one of my mentors. During several of my interviews, they brought up how impressed they were with my letters of rec, and I was asked about my research at Brockport at almost every interview. I am confident that my research in your lab helped me get my foot in the door at Upstate, as well as other medical schools, and I am still so grateful for that opportunity.

Jenna De rycke

The Brockport/MCC collaboration is currently small but clearly plays a role in helping students meet their educational and professional goals. Had the pandemic not hit, I would have hosted the third cohort of MCC CSTEP students in my lab this summer. Hopefully, the forced hiatus from research will not have a long-term impact on the program and we can get back into the game next summer.

Congrats Jenna, and good luck on this new phase of your life.

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