Name: Allen Kalampukattussery
Year: Third year
Major: Biological Sciences, Human Biology emphasis
Hometown: San Jose
What is a memorable project that you worked on during your time at UC Merced?
I am currently working on a project in Professor Gordon Bennett’s lab where I work on animal-microbe symbioses and develop gene-manipulation technologies using RNAi for gene knockdown. We block the gene products in bacteria that live inside leafhoppers to test the functionality of the gene and its products. That has been an exciting and educational experience.
What did you learn personally and academically by participating in this?
I am able to apply biological concepts I learned directly from my classes and go through the iterative process that is science. This has taught me a lot about how important patience and perseverance are in the questions that help us understand the world.
UC Merced has a lot of opportunities for experiential learning. What would you say to a future student who wants to be involved?
Find something that interests you. Make sure to reach out to graduate students or professors who are doing something that is genuinely interesting to you. Everyone at UC Merced is here to learn in some capacity so I find that a desire to learn is the best quality.