I have always been fascinated with academia and the opportunities for collaboration, so the STEM in Academia conference at Rowan University was the perfect experience to learn more about my potential role in this field.
The panel on STEM in academia gave me an outlook on the varied ways to be involved in research, teaching, and more. Panelists included Dr. Jahan, while a professor, is also an engineer and greatly involved in the administrative work at Rowan; Dr. Miles is able to travel through his fieldwork and uses this insight to teach students; and Mr. Wright sees the newest technologies in his licensing position and understands how to patent these products through the university. The panel allowed us to see that the work involved with STEM in academia is diverse with fieldwork, data analysis, teaching administration, and more. No day is ever the same.
In the next activity, our STEM classes were a glimpse into a possible class in college. My first class with Dr. Lattime was an interesting look into the newest cancer technologies and all the biology and immunology involved in developing such a technology. My next class with Dr. Huntley was a look into how to use mathematical models to help clean up oil spills. It was interesting to learn that rubber duckies and Nike shoes are some of the materials used to identify how oil spills move!
Throughout the conference, I met various scholars with interests similar and different to mine. I loved talking with these students and seeing their perspectives on the various talks and how they hope to be involved in academia one day. Additionally, within my research group, we discussed more our project involving wheat rust and the ways to improve our artificial intelligence model.
Overall, this was an extremely fulfilling conference to learn more about STEM in academia and meet new scholars!
Written by Anita Osuri 2021-2022 Governor's STEM Scholar
Anita Osuri is a senior at Biotechnology High School. As the president of her school's Students of Service club, National Honor Society, and Academic Team, she has founded numerous events to increase STEM education within the local community. To delve deeper into these passions, she has co-founded New Jersey Youth for Huntington's Disease, an organization dedicated to raising awareness about HD. Anita has presented on similar topics at Johns Hopkins University and Harvard University global health conferences. She is currently working on research on dengue fever and vaccine ethics. In the future, she hopes to become a professional in the global health field and work alongside health advocates to mitigate inequities.