Student Spotlight: Taylor Holland
Taylor Holland has loved science since childhood when she was captivated by Bill Nye the Science Guy.
“I became interested in chemistry from the science education programs on the Discovery Channel and then began to further fall in love with the sciences in general through school,” she said. “What really got me into organic chemistry was my Advanced Chemistry course senior year in high school. At College of DuPage, Professor Gary Roby is an excellent professor and continued to foster my interest in organic and biochemistry.
“There is just something magical about chemistry, similar to the allure of alchemy during the middle ages. What is better than taking two chemicals and turning them into something completely different?”
While at COD, Holland participated in a prestigious summer chemistry research internship thanks to a grant through the College Foundation’s Resource for Excellence program. She worked with Anna Pla-Dalmau, Ph.D., leader of the Scintillation Detector Development Technical Center at Fermilab, on a project involving a scintillator, which generates photons of light and can be used for diagnostics.
“This opportunity was just amazing. Professor Roby and the rest of the staff at COD have helped me start to form a reputation and gain valuable hands-on experience at a national laboratory. This is a major springboard for my career goals! Whether I go to medical school or not, this will definitely give me a leg up amongst the competition and make me a well-rounded student,” she said.
Holland will attend Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, to pursue a degree in biochemistry. She then would like to attend medical school and practice medicine while conducting her own research.
She is thankful to College of DuPage for providing her with so many opportunities, and she advises other students to put the necessary work into their studies.
“If I could give any advice to COD students pursuing chemistry, I would have to say first and foremost to study. Secondly, get to know all of your professors. Say ‘hello’ to them in the hallways, stop by their office for help and, while you are there, ask them about any connections they may have or opportunities they know about,” she said. “As you move forward in life, these academic and professional connections will benefit you immensely. I am definitely proof of this.”
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