Summer is over and a new school year has begun. It still hasn’t sunk in that I am starting my third year here at Linfield, but I couldn’t be more excited. In my short time here thus far I have fully come to appreciate the power of a small college, and it is paying off in dividends for me now. I previously wrote about my summer research experience at Northwestern University. That wouldn’t be possible without the number of opportunities that I was able to take advantage of in my first two years here. It honestly seems like these opportunities have only increased as time has continued. On top of doing research in the Chemistry Department, I am now a teaching assistant for one of the Organic Chemistry lab sections. I work with Liz Atkinson (the Organic Chemistry professor) and Katie Sours (the Organic Chemistry lab coordinator) to help students conduct and understand their experiments. Becoming a professor is one of the careers I have started to consider since I’ve been here at Linfield because I’ve seen first-hand just how great of an impact a good professor has on their students, and I feel like this opportunity really gives me true insight into what that is like from the teaching side of things. Furthermore, I should have the opportunity to publish the research that I have conducted to this point under Professor Jim Diamond. Writing and publishing your own journal article as the primary author while still and undergraduate is an opportunity many young scientists could never dream of. This is one of the many things that makes Linfield stand out in my mind compared to other schools. The slogan “Power of a Small College” definitely sums this up quite nicely, but I like to take it a step farther. I don’t go to just any small college, I go to Linfield College, so in my mind, the slogan really should be “The Power of Linfield College”. I’ll be honest by saying this wasn’t something I explicitly recognized right away, but it was always something that was there underneath the surface where I couldn’t exactly put my finger on it or explain it perfectly. But with experience comes enlightenment, and I am truly excited to see where else my Linfield experience will take me.
Til next time,