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Meet Current Students

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Sebastian Culver

Sebastian Culver

Hometown: Visalia, CA

Major: Biomedical Engineering

Why MRADS?

I chose MRADS because I wanted to do research as an undergraduate, but also I wanted to be a part of a strong-knit community that would make my first year at Michigan unforgettable. 

Favorite MRADS Memory

My favorite MRADS memory is the team building event that we had at the beginning of the semester with WISE. 

Tell us about your research project

Coming into research, I had no idea what I was doing or where I would end up. Luckily, after the help of the mentoring from MRADS faculty, I was able to find a research project that I liked, apply for it, and ended up getting the research position after a interview screening. Currently, I am working in Zhang labs, and the project that I am working on is creating new proteins in a wet lab, and observing if they function and have the desirable trait that we intended them to have. 

Why should students join MRADS?

I strongly advised students to join MRADS because they get an amazing opportunity to do research, which many students never get the chance to. However, the resources and the community that you have access to are just as valuable because they make the transition to college easier and better prepares you for the next four years of your life. 

How has MRADS impacted you?

So far, MRADS has had a big impact on my University of Michigan experience because MRADS prepared me for the difficult transition from high school to college. Plus, MRADS has given me some of my closest friends as well as an opportunity to pursue research in a field that I have been dreaming of for years. 

Adaeze Njoku

Adaeze Njoku

Hometown: West Bloomfield, MI

Major: Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience

Why MRADS?

Research is vital for the pre-health track, not only did this provide me with a great experience I was also able to establish a great group of friends within the living learning community. 

Favorite MRADS Memory

Being open and actually finding new people to become friends with during welcome week.

Tell us a little bit about your research project

My research experience is amazing. I am able to incorporate programs that I had previously used and correlate with my interests. I am able to expand my interests and learn more about the impact of social media and the school of nursing. Through MRADS, there is a broad range of opportunities one is able to acquire through any interests you have.

Why should students join MRADS?

MRADS provides a great start to the school year. Students are able to build new relationships with other new students, staff and professionals, with new experiences in the work-field as well.

How has MRADS impacted you?

MRADS has allowed me to create and establish great friends and professional connections and allowed me to improve my skills in interviews, and general professional attire. 

Nicholas Cemalovic

Nicholas Cemalovic

Hometown: Northville, MI

Major: Interdisciplinary Chemical Sciences

Why did you choose MRADS?

I chose MRADS because I wanted to not only do research, but be part of a community where everyone was supported academically and socially. I ended up getting much more than I thought I would, being able to closely interact with staff, sophomore leaders, and alumni. 

Favorite MRADS Memory

My favorite memory from MRADS would be all of the late nights spent in the hallways and lounges getting to know the people in my hall.

Tell us a little bit about your research project

I conduct research in an environmental toxicology laboratory in the School of Public Health, studying the effects of pesticide exposure on breast cancer development, especially in marginalized communities that are more highly exposed. I work both on the bench, culturing cells and exposing them to different toxicants, and on the computer, learning skills in coding to analyze and present data. I love that I get to experience public health, bioinformatics, and cancer biology, all with a super supportive and fun group of lab members.

Why should students join MRADS?

Students should join MRADS for the community, where everyone is so incredibly friendly, diverse, and excited about whatever they are studying. You get to explore the world of research and mentorship from a much deeper lens, all while getting to know your peers.

How has MRADS impacted you?

MRADS has provided me with the resources, connections, and confidence to be successful as a researcher and student.

Ceciel Zhong

Ceciel Zhong

Hometown: Shenzhen, China

Major: Information/Data Science

Why MRADS?

I wanted to have a small community and I'm enthusiastic about academic research!

Favorite MRADS Memory

Family!

Tell us a little bit about your research project

I'm involved in a project which focusses on collecting medical data from patients undergoing Atrial fibrillation(AF) ablations, which analyze signals with advanced processing, feature extraction and machine learning. Because of difficulty in finding targets in the heart to ablation, the procedures have had limited success in preventing further recurrence of AF. The final goal is to develop a method that features medical data signals, guides cardiologists during invasive ablation procedures and therefore reduces the recurrence of AF.

Why should students join MRADS?

MRADS is a community with like-minded people and a place to build valuable connections during the first year when most people feel lost - don't hesitate if you enjoy research and love a relatively small community!

How has MRADS impacted you?

MRADS has provided me with a place that is caring and a family-like atmosphere. The friends, mentors and events helped me so much not just academically, but also for being a more holistic person in my recovery of depression.

Alexander Vandeweghe

Alexander Vandeweghe

Hometown: Ithaca, MI

Major: Environmental Engineering

Why MRADS?

I chose MRADS to achieve a close knit community of like-minded, driven individuals on what can otherwise be a sometimes dauntingly large campus.

Favorite MRADS Memory

My favorite MRADS memory was the resume building workshop where all of the students were gathered in one room furiously typing away at resumes for research positions. It was a frenzy but we all laughed through the stress together and created professional depictions of ourselves that we may not have even thought possible. It made me realize that "Hey, maybe I really can do this."

Tell us a little bit about your research project

I am researching the variability of Great Lakes water balance components to determine if climate change leads to greater fluctuations in precipitation, evaporation, and runoff throughout the Great Lakes Basin. This research will be important in understanding how the climate and water levels of the Great Lakes will change in the coming years. My research position has been extremely beneficial academically and professionally as I learned new programming languages, collected field data, and got to know the professor and graduate students I am working worth.

Why should students join MRADS?

MRADS has been one of the defining communities of my time thus far at U of M, and I could not be happier for it. Whether it was been meeting with professors, conducting my research, or simply talking late into the night with other MRADS students in the halls of the dorm, each experience has led me to new and beneficial experiences. 

How has MRADS impacted you?

MRADS provided me with a community of friends and advisers as soon as I arrived on campus. As a student from a small high school with no other students attending U of M, having this network of people that I would rapidly become familiar with and could turn to with for advice has been invaluable.