The Pipette Gazette recently had the opportunity to interview, Dr. Nooshin Mirkheshti, a doctoral student in Molecular Genetics, working under the mentorship of Dr. Bandana Chatterjee. The title of Dr. Mirkheshti’s thesis was “Targeting Prostate Cancer by Salinomycin and Vitamin D3: Roles of the mTOR Signaling and Androgen/Androgen Receptor Pathway.”
Dr. Mirkheshti’s presentation began with some major technical difficulties. For one, Nooshin’s laptop was incompatible with the projector. With the help of an AV technician, Nooshin was able to use another laptop; however, this computer was unable to recognize her USB. On top of that, Nooshin was unable to connect with one of her committee members via video conference due to a failed connection. However, Nooshin cites the technical support from the AV office and the academic support from Dr. Weiss and Dr. Chatterjee as extremely helpful, which allowed her ” to feel relaxed and present [her] work without feeling distracted.” In the end, she was able to download her slides from her email and was able to present her defense with grace and composure.
[PG] What did you learn?
[Dr. Mirkheshti] Besides learning a wide range of laboratory techniques involved in molecular and cellular biology, I got the chance to be educated on how to lead collaborative scientific projects and how to conduct an independent research career.
[PG] What’s next?
[Dr. Mirkheshti] I will still be working on my last project to fill in some of the scholarly gaps. I am planning to continue my involvement in translational cancer research by merging the basic science concepts with the clinical aspect of prostate cancer. Obviously, all this happens after a, hopefully joyful, vacation!
[PG] Any advice for your fellow graduate students?
[Dr. Mirkheshti] First, try to enjoy your life at UTHSCSA. It is an amazingly productive academic environment with wonderful faculty and great staff! Being a part of UTHSCSA is going to be an unforgettable part of your life. It is the most joyful time of your life, as you do not need to be worried too much about your grant situation and your immediate career. Graduate study provides you the best timing to practice having a balance in your life, so by the time that you are becoming an independent scientist you have learned necessary management and social skills. Secondly, try to get involved in different projects in addition to your main project. It will open new doors while letting you increase your publication record.