I received my Bachelors degree in microbiology from Southern Illinois University. As an undergraduate I worked in an independent food-testing laboratory assisting in research projects and performing routine testing. Working as a laboratory technician furthered my interest in microbiology and prompted me to attend graduate school. When searching for a university to attend, the balanced program at Ohio State stood out. The diversity of the professors, their backgrounds, and research made the program very attractive when compared to other schools. During a campus visit I met many of the professors and graduate students and was surprised by the overall friendliness and enthusiasm of the department. After I joined the department, lab rotations allowed me to explore various fields and interests as well as meet more of the students and professors.
In 2002 I joined the lab of Brian Ahmer. Currently I am working on the identification of genes regulated by SdiA, a LuxR homolog, in Salmonella typhimurium. One of the greatest advantages to being at a large university is access to equipment and facilities, that an individual lab could not support. The classes that I have taken are constantly under revision to include the most recent information and involve the students in the process. I am sure that the education that I receive from the department will serve me well in the future.