Wednesday, May 11, 2016

A Novel Idea

              Every 20.109 assignment had its unique challenges. For Mod 3, the most daunting part for me was coming up with a NOVEL research idea for our presentation.

When my lab partner Brittany and I met the night before the M3D3 homework was due, we spent a couple hours talking and “thinking” but basically made no progress coming up with an idea for our research proposal. We ended up frantically emailing Leslie asking if she could meet with us in the hour break between lecture and lab. 
Luckily, Leslie said she would! When Leslie asked us what we were interested in, we said something along the lines of “Stem cells are kinda cool…” Luckily, Leslie didn’t judge us and told us to look back at our M3D2 homework. It turned out that Brittany was really interested in type 1 diabetes, so we decided to do something with that and incorporate stem cells. Leslie wasn’t convinced that I was passionate enough about the idea, but Brittany told her that’s what I always look like. 

We threw together a paragraph for the M3D3 homework and didn’t think too much more about our presentation until the day before we were supposed to give a pitch in class. I was really nervous to pitch our idea because I knew it was flawed and incomplete. Luckily, Brittany wasn’t nervous. She told me to calm down and that everything would be okay, and it was. I’m thankful that the teaching staff gave us helpful advice instead of ripping our idea to shreds, which is what I was most worried about.
After reading more research papers, Brittany and I ended up modifying our idea to something I’m proud of because I think our experiment could actually provide meaningful/significant results. Once we had our idea, everything was downhill for me. Brittany and I were able to combine our previous experiences from the Mod 2 presentation to make slides that were pretty good in a short period of time. Then, we improved our slides at office hours and during our BE communications lab meeting. I was still nervous to present, but I was more confident than I was for the Mod 2 presentation, and I think it ended up going pretty well.

Overall, I’m happy with all that I have learned and accomplished for this presentation and in 20.109 in general! 

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