Most of the summer is already gone! I thought I’d share some pictures of the building I work in with you. It’s called the BioScience Research Collaborative, or BRC. When I visited Rice when I was still in high school, this building was still being built. It is the headquarters for the Bioengineering major, and it has both classrooms and labs. It’s a little far from the rest of Rice, and I have a 10-15 minute walk in mornings and afternoons from my car. I’m sad to say that I still get lost when I’m on Rice’s campus because I just haven’t spent all that much time there. The BRC is a really nice builiding to work in though. The space is very pretty, and the labs are relatively new and clean (well, as clean as my lab group can keep them, and I guess that’s not saying much - don’t worry, we have mandatory lab cleanup tomorrow). It’s right across the street from the huge Texas Medical Center - it’s a pretty cool feeling to be so close to the largest medical center in the world!
Here are some different views!
Looking up from the ground…
…looking out from the 6th floor at downtown with the Medical Centers on the right (can you spot that molecule again?)
View from the office
Typical lab stuff :)
It’s a really nice building and reminds me of the new buildings at Tech. Thanks to the Honor Code, we can get access to a lot of buildings after hours using our ID card or a key. That means I can use empty classrooms and lounge areas in fancy new buildings to study and take exams - an environment I find preferable to a crowded library during exam weeks. There have been quite a few buildings partially or completely renovated in the last 5-6 years - they all look really cool with lots of glass and a modern feel. I especially like the ones that have kept the classic architecture on the outside but look nice and new inside.
Almost a year ago now, I was just about to start my first Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) at JPL. NASA had sent out an email to all of their summer interns containing a social media template to announce that we had been selected as NASA interns. Excited to show my NASA pride, I posted it on my Instagram story, unaware of what would come out of this small action.
Hey hey! We’re starting a series where I walk you through my best finds for food and drinks in the Pasadena region, and in the LA metropolitan area. Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives, if you will (although, for copyright reasons we can’t call it that). As you explore your college options, I firmly believe that food and location are more important than your high school guidance counselor may lead you to believe. And I’m here to share my best finds from my time at Caltech with you.
Over the past several months, I have had the opportunity to intern at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) under the mentorship of senior research technologist Dr. Xiaoqing Pi. Dr. Pi’s guidance and mentorship has been instrumental to the development and success of my internship at JPL, where I use machine-learning to enhance the accuracy and integrity of navigation and communication signals. In addition to helping me develop an understanding of atmospheric and ionospheric remote sensing and machine-learning, Dr. Pi has often offered his insights on how to improve my researching skills. Dr. Pi was generous enough to take the time to answer a few questions regarding his research and advice for future student interns. I believe many students can benefit from some of the lessons that he has taught me:
The transition period to remote learning was a very uncertain time, especially for research and the Caltech Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF) program. Many hands-on projects had to pivot at the last minute to facilitate off-campus contributions. However, many Techers were able to take advantage of the research opportunities offered at Caltech and JPL to make the best out of remote learning and research. To paint a picture, I’ve interviewed a few talented Techers for some insight on what researching from home looks like for them.