Meet Current Students


Athreya Varadarajan
Peer Mentor
New Delhi, India
Biomedical Engineering

My research job helped me figure out what career I wanted to pursue.   Last year, I worked in the Extra-Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) Lab on the Pediatric Artificial Lung project. We basically were testing a device on sheep to determine how effective this device was in aiding a patient’s blood oxygenation. My job as a student researcher was to help out in the lab by taking care of the sheep(giving it meds and checking its blood oxygen level etc.) after the device had been implanted and to record data. I also had to help out in the Operating Room by handing instruments during the surgery and there was an experiment almost every week. It was most definitely one of the highlights of working in the lab as it gave me an insight into how surgeons work and what would be required of me if I wanted to pursue a career in medicine. My sponsor and all the lab fellows and the technicians were approachable and they taught me a lot about the subject during my year in the lab.

Allie Grenon
Peer Advisor
Battle Creek, Michigan
Psychology and English 

MRC made my first year at UM. The social aspect is incredible. Living in a hallway with sophomores was very beneficial. If I had a question about anything at all, such as, where is this class or how do I get a research project, there would be a sophomore across the hall more than willing to help. I made close friends within the community, and was able to a research project in psychology which has always been an interest of mine. This interest developed into a passion, and now my anticipated major is psychology. MRC is a fantastic overall experience and I've been blessed to be a part of it.

I learned a lot from working at my lab for the year. I learned how to create and test a hypothesis based on our lab's data and how to translate the information gathered into real world context in hopes of lowering obesity in children. The highlights included research experience, a very knowledgeable sponsor in developmental psychology, and learning how research is conducted in a field I am passionate about.

Rico Angell
Peer Mentor
Midland, Michigan
Computer Science and Engineering

MRC made the large University small. I was surrounded by a lot of people who shared common interests in research and academia which led to having a great support system and some good friends.  

I worked on a project with the goal of using Machine Learning to make Hardware Verification more efficient. We submitted a paper to a top tier conference at the end of the Winter Term, and I learned about what goes into writing a technical paper.

Jonathan Williams
Peer Mentor
Lathrup Village, Michigan
Molecular and Cellular Biology and Latin

It was nice to be in a community of other students interested in a variety of areas of research. I felt like I had more in common with my fellow community members. I participated in research on biomarkers to be used to improve the treatment of Cardiovascular disease. I learned how to design experiments, interpret results, and do Western Blots.

Andrea Miller
Peer Mentor
Fenton, Michigan
Chemical Engineering

MRC had a huge impact on my first year in college, because if allowed me to become acquainted with completing research and gave me the opportunity to find a research project that I was really interested in. Beyond that, because the social side of the community is also strong, I met many close friends from the community and was able to acclimate to college easily.

My research experience from last year was with building microparticles, which encapsulate cells, for tissue engineering. I really enjoyed the experience and learned some very specific techniques for constructing the particles as well as some imaging techniques. I also learned about collaboration in research and how interdisciplinary research is, because the lab I worked in had undergraduate and graduate students from numerous engineering and science disciplines. The highlights for me were getting know all of the people in my lab, learning about the research process and being able to contribute to cutting edge research.

Kaleab Mamo
Peer Mentor
Grand Rapids, Michigan

I was able to work on an undergraduate research in Biophysics, called: "Investigating growth vs. transition temperatures in plasma membrane vesicles". I had the chance to learn so many new things but in short: how to use and work on Matlab programs, how to handle lab equipment and an understanding of lipid heterogeneity in live cells being affected by growth temperature shifts of the cells, along the transition temperatures of their plasma membrane vesicles.  I was able to learn how to behave in a scientific lab very well, which I think will be of great help in future lab classes and research for undergrad and grad school.

Tilbe Cakar
Peer Mentor
Istanbul, Turkey
Communications and Psychology

Being around people that are in the same boat as you is comforting as there is always someone to offer a hand, when you need help. There are so many resources that are available to MRC students. I don't think I would be able to adapt to college as easily as I did, if it wasn't for this community. MRC is a very supporting community.