January 5th, 2022

Sihan (Hannah) Jia

I recently graduated from New York University – Tandon School of Engineering with a Master degree of biotechnology. During my time studying biotechnology, I learned to find my topics of interest and designed my own experiments. Every time I presented my research work, I gained many positive comments from my classmates and professors, I felt so motivated and therefore worked harder. I collaborated well with my colleagues and they inspired me a lot when discussing about projects. Since both of my parents work in hospitals, they taught me about medical science since I was a child. Gradually, I began to be intrigued by this amazing field that seemed like another world. So I found that I was more interested in figuring out how life works and that’s why I chose molecular biology as my career. Protein engineering is an enchanting field where altering biological characteristics becomes possible. My previous experience mainly focused on genetic engineering such as constructing and expressing recombinant plasmids in prokaryotes, protein expression and purification, western blot and ELISA. I’m really excited about practicing various new techniques.

Since completing my degree I have joined the Montclare Lab and work with Dustin and Cheng. They encouraged me a lot and guided me to be familiar with their projects. With the help of them and all other lab members, I have learned some new techniques such as syringe pump purification, CD measurement, protein concentration and BCA test. We are currently working on the optimization and application of Q proteins which can self assemble to hydrogel under normal conditions. This project is super cool and can be applied at many fields like drug delivery or conductivity.

“What is science and what is the meaning of being a researcher?” – I’ve been thinking about such questions since I chose biotechnology as my major.

Over the years studying and talking with different people, now my answer would be that science is beautiful and being a researcher gives me a sense of achievement. Even though sometimes the experiment might be boring and cost a lot of time, but when you finally get successful results, the excitement of that moment was more than anything. But life is more than work. At my spare time, I like to watch movies and hang out with my friends. New York City is beautiful and there are always enchanting places to explore. When I am alone, I love to practice my guitar skills and I think fingerstyle is super cool! I love classic and country music. Hope someday I can make my own

In the future, I would like to pursue a PhD degree in a field relevant to biology. The more you learn, the less you find yourself prepared. There are no boundaries for science and there is no limit for studying. Work harder, play harder –

That’s my lifestyle.