I chose to pursue my Ph.D. at FSU because of how research-oriented the Institute of Molecular Biophysics is. FSU is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and resources, In addition, FSU is among one of the few colleges in the United States with renowned faculties in the field of biophysics. Many professors are leading researchers who have made significant contributions to the discipline. Their expertise can provide us with unparalleled mentorship and research opportunities.
Motivation to pursue a graduate degree
My goal is to become an independent researcher, dedicated to conducting applied research that bridges fundamental biological understanding with practical applications. I see a graduate program as the ideal platform to receive essential training, access valuable resources, and benefit from experienced mentorship to cultivate the skills and expertise required to conduct self-driven research effectively.
Importance and/or impact of research and work
My research focuses on deciphering the molecular mechanism of the bacterial immune system known as CRISPR-Cas. By delving into the structural and molecular intricacies, we gain the capacity to design and engineer CRISPR components. This, in turn, allows the development of tailor-made CRISPR tools for a wide spectrum of applications, including rapid diagnostic tools, stem-cell research and gene-editing therapy.
As a biophysics graduate, my career aspirations include contributing to the field of structural biology and cryo-EM. I aim to work in a research institution or university with my own independent group in the future. Additionally, I would like to teach and mentor undergraduate students, motivating them to pursue science. My ultimate goal would be to play a pivotal role in advancing our understanding of the complex biological processes and their applications in healthcare and beyond.
Advice for anyone considering graduate school
Carefully researching programs to find the right fit in terms of career goals is a crucial aspect when applying to graduate schools. During grad life, staying updated on developments in one's own field and being aware of the latest research trends and job market dynamics also helps significantly. Alongside this, resilience and passion are the top assets that can drive one's journey to achieving a successful graduate life.
Accomplishments during graduate career
I am proud to have been awarded a travel grant for presenting my research work at the Biophysical Society Meeting at San Francisco in 2022. I am also proud to have published a first-author paper titled "Molecular mechanism of active Cas7-11 in processing CRISPR RNA and interfering target RNA" in eLife in 2022, and a co-authored paper titled "Virus detection via programmable Type III-A CRISPR-Cas systems” in Nature Communication in 2021. This research is in the process of being patented (U.S. Application Serial No. 17/709,571, published on October 13, 2022, The Florida State University Research Foundation, Inc.).