Natalie Steenrod

Entering Class - 2016

E-MAIL: steen255@umn.edu

UNDERGRAD INSTITUTION AND MAJOR:
University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

UNDERGRADUATE AWARDS:
Meyerhoff Scholar, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Scholar, National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering Scholar

UNDERGRADUATE OR POST-BAC RESEARCH:
The summer after my sophomore year I did an internship at Yale School of Medicine studying synaptic vesicle kinetics at the neuromuscular junction in ALS under Dr. Arthur Horwich. I spent the school years and two summers performing organic drug synthesis at UMBC under Dr. Katherine Seley-Radtke, designing and synthesizing drugs for both HIV and Ebola.

WHAT GOT YOU INTERESTED IN RESEARCH?
I have always been curious about the world around me, and was encouraged to ask questions and expand my knowledge base throughout my childhood. Eventually, a genetics class in high school convinced me that I was interested in life science.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE MN?
The UMN was my number one choice. I was excited about Itasca (our four week long introduction to neuroscience course during the month of August up at Lake Itasca), as well as the close-knit community of both students and faculty. During student presentations, faculty and students knew each other by name and were conversing as equals, which showed me that this program wanted to teach you how to be a scientist, as well as help you understand that the faculty here will eventually be your colleagues. There are also opportunities to explore career paths other than academia.

STUDENT MENTOR AND THE BEST ADVICE THEY GAVE.
Julia Gamache: The key to the first year is finding the balance between classes and lab. The other important thing is that the faculty mentor is ultimately the most important thing in picking a lab. The research needs to be interesting, but if you don’t get along with your PI, it will be a miserable 5+ years.

Natalie Steenrod