This week we were asked to address any problems or challenges that we have encountered with our summer research projects. I would have to say that my biggest obstacle has come from the unpredictability that is research. Throughout the summer, I have had to adjust and deal with time limitations, the addition of components to my project, as well as balance my other lab responsibilities. Thankfully, I have had many resources that have been helpful in this process. One essential item that has made all of the juggling possible is my lab key. I honestly do not know what I would have done this summer, had I not had access to the lab at all hours. I have been there from as early as 5:30am to as late as 1am, and sometimes both in the same day. Another vital resource has, of course, been my mentor. He has been there for me throughout the summer, every step of the way. For him and all of his teachings and support, I will always be grateful.
In regards to my project, I am most proud of how much this is my own project. Especially as an undergraduate in a lab setting, most projects are collaborative efforts. Yet for this research, I can proudly say that I have conducted most of the work, and am the “expert” (along with my mentor) on the project in the lab. However, much work remains to be done, and I am nervous about the time restraints that are tightening as we come closer and closer to the end of the program. I know the work will get done, I just I hope I can do it in a timely fashion without too much extra stress.