Treasurer, Michael Wood















Senior. Biology and Music Major, Chemistry Minor.

“I majored in biology because I was interested in the world around me, while at the same time looking to prepare for a career in medicine. I have been very satisfied with the biology major. It has expanded my perspective into our world, while at the same time provided a solid foundation for my studies in medicine.”


What would you do differently?

    “I wish I learned proper study techniques earlier. My freshman year I thought a couple of hours of preparation the night before a test would be sufficient. I was wrong.”

Lab work:

    Current research in Dr. Nina Sherwood’s laboratory studying Autosomal Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia, a neurodegenerative disease.

How did you find your lab?:

    “I found the lab through the IGSP directory on the internet.”

Contact:michael.wood@duke.edu

Officer, Trisha Saha










Junior. Biology Major, Certificate in Cell and Molecular Biology.

    “I’ve always been fascinated by the intricacy of life at the molecular level. The biology major at Duke allows you to be a well-rounded biologist while giving lots of opportunity to find your own niche in the field. I am very happy with my decision. The faculty are so kind and I’ve had the opportunity to take interesting seminar courses with less than ten people! The major brings together passionate students together to explore cutting-edge topics. This is truly a unique experience. The major is challenging, but that is the excitement of it: there is always more to learn and hopefully the vast unknown will spark interest for future biologists!”


What would you do differently?

    “Although I am interested in cell and molecular biology, I wish I had taken some more non-molecular courses earlier on just out of my own interest. With only four or five classes a semester and a multitude of requirements, it’s tough to take all the interesting biology classes you want to take. Students must realize that the bio major is not just a vessel to med school; there is so much more to learn! I am excited about taking animal physiology next semester and possibly herpetology senior year!”

Lab work:

     Previous work was in Dr. Peggy Kirby’s laboratory studying heart development. Current research in the Dr. Nenad Bursac’s lab studying cardiac stem cells and progenitor cells.

How did you find your lab?:

    “I spent the summer at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, which is where I first started working on cardiac progenitors. A visiting scholar I was working with told me that Dr. Bursac would be great to work with since he does similar work. I was a bit hesitant at first about going to the BME department as a biology major, but I’m glad I took the risk.”

Contact: trisha.saha@duke.edu


Officer, Teresa Ai















Junior. Biology Major, Chemistry Minor

“ I find the depth of understanding expected of Biology classes at Duke to be extremely challenging, and therefore, fascinating. It would be no exaggeration to say that the amount of knowledge I have gained through my biology classes in multiple scientific disciplines by learning about chemical and physical explanations of biological systems has skyrocketed.

    I am definitely happy with my decision to be a biology major. My approach to science is a dynamic process--my perspective is constantly evolving in reaction to new theories, explanations, and scientific methodologies that are perpetually being introduced to me through classes and discourse with fellow students and professors.”


What would you do differently?

    “I would have done a more thorough investigation of labs on campus freshman year in order increase my number of options.”

Lab work:

    Previous work was in the Yoder Lab. Current research in Dr. Meta Kuehn’s lab studying vesticulation mechanism in gram-negative bacteria from a genetic standpoint.

How did you find your lab?:

    “I contacted the professor directly and was welcomed to work!”

Contact:teresa.ai@gmail.com

President, Rachel Randolph















Senior. Biology Major, Chemistry Minor.

“I have always been fascinated by how things operate and what drives biological systems and change. My particular interest is in the human body. The biology major has provided with a great foundation of basic biology and chemistry courses, while allowing me to take higher level courses that are of great interest to me, such as Comparative Anatomy. The biology major also helps prepare me for a career in medicine.”


What would you do differently?

    “I would have utilized resources such as Professors and TAs more in freshman and sophomore years. They are a great resource and are not used by students enough!”

Lab work:

    Current research in Dr. Huntington Willard’s laboratory studying escape from X-chromosome inactivation in Humans.

How did you find your lab?:

    “Dr. Willard was my biology Professor in the Human Genome Revolution FOCUS group.”

Contact: rer8@duke.edu

Vice President, Sally Liu















Senior. Biology Major, Physics Minor, and Certificate in Genome Sciences & Policy.

“Biology was my favorite subject in high school, and then the courses that I took confirmed my interest in the major. I also liked the flexibility of the major, the options for different areas of concentration, and the opportunity to engage in independent research. Finally, I am pursuing a career in medicine, so I felt like the biology major was fitting to give me the solid biological science background I would need in the future.”


What would you do differently?

    “I would not have taken Bio 118 my freshman fall! I also wish I would’ve been able to plan ahead better so that I could have done a biology abroad (either at the Marine Lab or in Costa Rica or South Africa).”

Lab work:

    Current research in Dr. Nina Sherwood’s laboratory studying the effects of cold temperature on mutant Drosophila models for human autosomal dominant hereditary spastic paraplegia.

How did you find your lab?:

    “Dr. Sherwood had sent out an e-mail expressing interest in recruiting undergrad research assistants. I found the e-mail on the biomajors e-mail list and contacted her that way.”

Contact:sallydliu@gmail.com

Officer, Christian Parobek




Junior. Biology and Classical Languages Major, Chemistry Minor.

    “Biology has always been interesting to me. Now more than ever before, basic biology holds the ability to positively affect a variety of aspects of life, from energy solutions to healthcare.

    I am very happy with my decision to be a biology major. Though Duke’s biology major is a large one. it still in many respects is a close community. A biology major at Duke provides us with the knowledge base, discipline, and connections to get started on a successful career in a biology-related field.”


What would you do differently?

    “Become involved in Biology-related activities earlier: Lab work, lecture by distinguished speakers, and social events.”

Lab work:

     Current research in the Poss lab in the Nanaline Duke building studying the molecular basis of fin regeneration in zebrafish.

How did you find your lab?:

    “I began working in the Poss lab feeding fish as a work study job my first summer at Duke while I was taking summer classes.”

Contact:christian.parobek@duke.edu