Student Perspective: Colleen Carlston

Graduating Class of 2016

Undergraduate: Harvard University

John and Amy Phelan Student
NSF Graduate Research Fellow

After having a wonderful URP experience, I already knew that I loved the environment at CSHL – the beautiful setting, students and faculty who enjoy scientific discussions nearly as much as summer volleyball games, and NYC just a short train ride away. However, I did not know what to expect when it came to coursework. The fall semester was jam-packed and much of the material, which spans the breadth of the biological sciences, was completely new to me. Due to this, I was very grateful for the tutoring system. The tutors are typically postdocs well versed in an area and they are very accessible and helpful. For them it is an opportunity to gain teaching experience and for students it is a chance to have someone expert but not too far removed from grad school themselves help them come to grips with difficult material. I appreciated the support and encourage subsequent school students to reach out to the tutors early and often. Even after classes come to an end, the wonderful thing about CSHL is that there are many people around with knowledge and expertise in any given field of research or technique and that you should not hesitate to talk with them. Although there are plenty of high-tech laboratories and newfangled equipment to facilitate research, I think CSHL’s most valuable resource continues to be the people here.