Things started off in a whirlwind:

On Friday, 10/14/11 I found out that I was accepted as Dr. Steve Koch’s REU student, with Anthony Salvagno as my mentor. The acceptance letter was signed and faxed on Monday. I met with Linda and Anthony Wednesday afternoon at CHTM. At that time we realized that the email address being used for me was incorrect, which was why I hadn’t heard anything from anyone… I had to give a presentation on Friday. I had to get fairly up-to-speed, in a short period of time.

Watching the other REU students present before me was a little intimidating. They had lots of slides, graphs, pictures, charts, etc. I had three slides and about 6 hours of cramming. I needed to communicate intelligently three things:  Project description/overview, what my role was, and what I hoped to gain from the experience.

Two things:  We are studying how life forms use deuterium (D2O), or if they simply tolerate it. We are using Open Notebook Science (ONS) to document our work. I’ll be helping set up the experiments with tobacco seeds, mustard seeds, e.coli, and yeast. I’ll also be learning about ONS.

Pretty exciting stuff.