Student Perspective: Elizabeth Nakasone

Elizabeth Nakasone

Graduating Class of 2012

Undergraduate: University of Southern California

Leslie C. Quick, Jr. Fellow
William Randolph Hearst Fellow

Setting foot on the grounds of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory for the first time was at once an exhilarating and intimidating experience. It is a place filled with a rich scientific history, where research is always at the cutting edge and the rates of scientific discourse and exchange only grow with each passing year. And it is a place focused on encouraging young scientific minds to learn all they possibly can and to explore and push the limits of current scientific thought. To be able to embark on a career in science in an environment like this is why I joined the School. I think I will always be a little starstruck when it comes to the Laboratory, but I have now developed an overwhelming appreciation for this unique place and the multitude of opportunities offered here, and nowhere else in the world.

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory truly is the best place in the world to both conduct research and mature as a scientist. Every lab on campus is conducting state of the art research, and publishing their results in high-impact journals. Individual laboratories and core facilities are continually working to improve on current technologies or adapting and applying novel experimental approaches as they arise. There is a wealth of people willing to stop for coffee or lunch or perhaps a drink at the bar, to toss out ideas, build them up, tear them apart, and start all over. An implicit open door policy provides us a unique resource for help with protocols, the exchange of powerful new technologies and reagents, interdisciplinary interactions and collaborations, and the occasional 2 a.m. reagent emergency. The continuous stream of meetings and courses throughout the year provides an influx of great scientific minds from all over the world, providing the opportunities to attend seminars and courses outside the scope of one’s own research interests, meet with people working in the same field, and make new connections with researchers from around the world.