Don’t Just Take Advice, Evaluate It

As a component of my summer research experience, I have been very fortunate to hear from faculty researchers from diverse fields. Many of these sessions were filled with learning about not only the research that these faculty members do here at Duke but also how they came to find themselves doing research at Duke, and what opportunities research has afforded them. Personally, I found it very interesting to hear about the somewhat linear and more often then not so linear paths that led them to doing what they love.

One talk that stood out to me in particular was Dr. Mohamed Noor’s presentation on his meanderings on evolution and species formation. The research Dr. Noor conducts is focused on biological evolution that occurs within populations of Drosophila as a result of variances in recombination. More so how these changes in genetic recombination overtime lead to the formation of a new lineage of a species. I really enjoyed learning how phenomenons like antibiotic resistance which pose great threats in the post antibiotic era is a great demonstration of natural selection occurring within our environment and can have real consequences for humans in the long term.

In addition to learning more about his research, Dr. Noor left us with a few pieces of advice that deeply resonated. This advice from his own journey to become a researcher are to take chances and initiative, evaluate the advice given to you, and also, do something you love. As I continue in my undergraduate and research career, I hope to embrace this advice in the future decisions and directions I may pursue.



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