Where are you from? Why Madison and the Cancer Biology program?
I am originally from Council Bluffs, Iowa. Madison is such a fun town, and I chose UW-Madison and the Cancer Bio program mostly because of the atmosphere and the exciting research opportunities UW/Cancer Bio has to offer.
What is your favorite place/activity when you need to de-stress?
My favorite place to de-stress is anywhere near a lake or hiking on any of the trails near Madison!
You were 6 months into the program when the lockdown was put in place. What was your PI and lab’s response?
Mostly we just rolled with the punches, took it day by day and one step at a time. It was a huge transition for everyone, but we made it through.
What is your new norm? How have you been coping with classes and trying to do in-person research?
I spend a lot more time at home now–doing data analysis, reading, etc. In terms of coping with classes and in-person research, there was a large learning curve to develop the required time management skills. But eventually I developed a solid routine to balance virtual school and in-person research. One of the best things that came out of this pandemic is that I started working out more, which has been transformational to both my mental and physical health.
Any advice for incoming students, especially under these new circumstances?
I think we have all learned a lot more about ourselves through this time, but I guess my biggest piece of advice is to pay attention to your body’s needs and always have an open mind and be flexible!