RIC Student Profiles

Katrina Taylor

Have you developed any growing research interests since starting the RIC? Or did you come in with specific research interests? If so, what are they?

When I started my first year of university I had very little research interest, but since joining the RIC I have been considering it as an alternate career path. The RIC has opened my eyes to the possibilities that biology and research offers, especially at the U of L.

Since your time at the U of L have you won any awards or qualified for any funding?

Since I started at the U of L I have received a SKiP bursary and scholarship at the Chinook Regional Hospital for volunteering and academic excellence. 

What was your experience at the Undergraduate Research Conference? 

The Undergraduate Research Conference was an amazing experience to go beyond the classroom and really showcase what we had done in the RIC. I feel like I am way better prepared for future presentations, research posters, abstracts and papers. Preparing and presenting at URSCA gave me an advantage over other peers in my program and year and I look forward to the next academic semester. 

Do you have any specific career plans? If so, how is the RIC helping to realize those plans/goals?

I aspire to attend medical school after completing my undergrad degree. The RIC is helping me gain valuable research experience, hone my academic writing and lab skills and is assisting me in succeeding in all of my other classes.

Any other information about your RIC experience that you'd like to share

The RIC has created a big family, everyone in the second year has basically the same class schedule and interests. We almost always study together, attend lectures together and share notes and advice. The RIC builds relationships that give academic and psychological support as the fellow students are as focused on academic success and many of the students share similar personality traits and interests. The kids from the internship have definitely become my university family and the RIC is how I met my boyfriend and best friend. The RIC also has a fantastic student-teacher ratio and an amazing opportunity to access professors and lab instructors. The other amazing opportunity created by the RIC is the opportunity to connect with and make a positive impression on professors, this is fantastic to anyone looking for more research opportunities or awards/funding. 

 

Kaden Fujita 

Have you developed any growing research interests since starting the RIC? Or did you come in with specific research interests? If so, what are they?

From a young age I was interested in science and biology, and always had a scientific curiosity. However, before coming the University of Lethbridge and joining the RIC I had minimal knowledge of how research at a university level functioned and how many fields of biology there are. Since Joining the RIC I have become interested primarily in molecular biology and genetics.

Since your time at the U of L have you won any awards or qualified for any funding?

I was awarded the NSERC USRA (Undergraduate Student Research Award) and Chinook Summer Research Award. (awarded both but only accepted NSERC)

What was your experience at the Undergraduate Research Conference? 

I thoroughly enjoyed participating at URSCA, it was an excellent opportunity to present the research I had done over the past semester to professors and students from other universities. I also presented a poster at RiboWest 2018 at the U of L on the research I had done during the summer. Both were great experiences and I learned a lot from the other students and professors at each of these conferences.

 

Marina Galatonov 
Marina Galatonov

Have you developed any growing research interests since starting the RIC? Or did you come in with specific research interests? If so, what are they?

My understanding of research was very limited when I came into the RIC. Through the internship, I have been introduced to cancer research which has peaked my interest in that field of research. I am very happy to be continuing my projects with funding from the AIHS studentship during the summer. It is very exciting to take part in research that could improve people's lives!

Since your time at the U of L have you won any awards or qualified for any funding?

I am very happy to be continuing my projects with funding from the AIHS studentship during the summer. It is very exciting to take part in research that could improve people's lives!

What was your experience at the Undergraduate Research Conference? 

The Undergraduate Research Conference was an amazing experience and a great way to end the spring semester. I met a lot of students with interests similar to mine and I learned a lot about communicating scientific information.

Any other information about your RIC experience that you’d like to share

Writing has always been one of my weaknesses so the first year in the RIC was a little difficult for me because it was heavily graded on lab reports. However, I benefited immensely from all the feedback. Being a Biology major entails writing many lab reports. The RIC has improved my writing abilities and prepared me for lab reports from other Biology courses. 

 

Darren Van Essen 
Darren Van Essen

Have you developed any growing research interests since starting the RIC? Or did you come in with specific research interests? If so, what are they?

Before becoming part of the RIC I had very little knowledge about scientific research and the processes involved. The RIC introduced me to biological research and since has sparked my interest in molecular, genetics, and clinical research. It has allowed me to work on projects related mostly to plant genetics, but I am hoping to expand into other areas in the next few years.

Since your time at the U of L have you won any awards or qualified for any funding?

I have received various scholarships in my first 2 years, including some from the University, some from high school, and a few external awards. Probably the most relevant that I feel my experience with the RIC has helped to get would be the Chinook and NSERC undergraduate summer research awards.

What was your experience at the Undergraduate Research Conference? 

URSCA was an exciting, eye-opening experience for me. Being part of a research conference made me feel like a contributing part of research. Being able to network with other students and researchers was a very valuable experience, and being able to see projects that they are working on was a great learning experience about other fields.

Do you have any specific career plans? If so, how is the RIC helping to realize those plans/goals?

I hope to go to medical school, but as I become more involved in research, I have realized there are more fields I’d like to pursue. I am hoping that in my future I can combine my interest in medicine and research.

Any other information about your RIC experience that you'd like to share

Nothing in particular to say other than the RIC has given me a lot of eye-opening experiences, fun, and some of my best friends!