>> p = [5,4,2,3,9,8,1,6,7]
5 4 2 3 9 8 1 6 7
>> x = plot(p)
>> title(‘This is a plot.’)
>> xlabel(‘This is the x axis.’)
>> ylabel(‘This is the y axis.’)
>> set(x, ‘Color’, ‘red’)
>> title(‘Oh look, I can change the color of the line, too.’)
>> title(‘Hah! I can plot in Matlab. >:D’)
And thus begin my adventures in Matlab.
I sit on my couch eagerly waiting for my textbook to ship. “MATLAB: For Scientists and Engineers” is its title. I ordered it on Tuesday, so hopefully it’ll get here before I go back for research starting on Monday!
So far, I’ve had two restful weeks of summer vacation. Has it gone by too quickly? I’m not sure, but I’ve been catching up on plenty of sleep and I feel all refreshed to go back! I’m very excited to begin researching pollen with the Chemical Engineering department, so I’ve been looking forward to research more than ever!
Apparently, we chemical engineers love to model things. Ranging from nanotubes in the Materials track, biomolecules in the (guess what?) Biomolecular track, reactions in the Process track, to atmospheric particles in the Environment track, modeling becomes second nature by the time we leave campus.
My name is Kayane. I am a freshman chemical engineer, and I am ready to conquer the modeling world.
My target is pollen.
As soon as my textbook arrives, I will eagerly devote my time to absorbing all the information I can from it. If I succeed, there will be no obstacle too difficult for me in my quest to conquer pollen and its modeling challenges -I am going pollen hunting!
Research at Caltech looks different for every student, and can often vary term by term. As a chemistry major, my course requirements are on the lighter side for a Caltech major, and many chemistry majors take advantage of the lighter course load to join research groups. This can be whenever the student wants, but many people join labs during their freshman or sophomore years. Some may work in one lab only, and some may switch between labs during the course of their undergraduate studies, depending on if their interests change.
SURF, short for Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship, is a quintessential experience for any Caltech student. It is a widely accessible research fellowship for Caltech students that funds your proposed research for one summer term. While many of my classmates did their first SURF the summer after their freshman year, I sent in my first application to the program as a sophomore. As a CS major, I was trying to chase meaningful work that intersected computation with the field of neuroscience. I ended up doing a SURF at the Stanford School of Medicine that first year, studying hand gestures in children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Since then, I’ve been working in the research space of applying computational analyses to ASD.
This summer, from the confines of my Brooklyn apartment, you could find me typing away on a tiny 13-inch laptop screen. At times I was looking for answers on countless Stack Exchange pages, editing a Jupyter notebook, or making blood flow measurements on a software called Arterys. This was my 2021 Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURF) experience.
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.