I obtained my BS in Biochemistry at North Central College in Naperville, IL. Upper-level courses that I took for this degree included Biochemistry, Microbiology, and Molecular Biology topics. In addition to majoring in Biochemistry, I also minored in Computer Science and Bioinformatics, learning how to program in Java and Python, and taking courses on algorithms, data structures, and discrete math. I worked as a software engineering intern at Informatica in Naperville, IL for one summer, working primarily in Java.
Additionally, I participated in an undergraduate summer research program in the department of Microbiology and Immunology at Loyola University in Maywood, IL, working with Dr. Richard Schultz. We investigated the regulatory role of isomerization of a linker-region proline in the E. coli transcription factor RcsB.
As a separate research project, I also completed an honors thesis at North Central College working with Dr. Caroline St. Clair and Dr. Jonathan Visick. My aim for this thesis was to create a computational method for predicting proteins’ susceptibility to isoaspartyl formation given only their amino-acid sequence. My work on this project consisted of collecting a training set of proteins in which isoaspartyl formation has been experimentally observed, and developing an algorithm to predict susceptibility of new proteins based off these data.