Mar. 24, 2017

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Kalamazoo, MI

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Est. 1877

Alumni Update

2015 Biology Major Now Eyes Law School

During her time at K, Emily Sklar K’15 was involved with Student Commission and LandSea, among many other things (Photo Courtesy of Emily Sklar)
By

Q: What have you been doing since you graduated K?

A: I’ve been working a handful of jobs since I graduated. So far, it hasn’t been all too glamorous. I was lucky enough to have a job lined up right after school as a research assistant for Michigan State University. The lab I worked in was the berry crops entomology lab. I worked at an off-campus site in Fennville, MI, which is mainly a farming town. I worked at this position until Thanksgiving and I’ve been working at a restaurant since then.

Q: Can you tell me specifically about the research position you held after graduation?

A: The research that I conducted at the Fennville station, Trevor Nichols Research Center, was mainly on the Spotted wind drosophila (nicknamed SWD, full name: drosophila Suzukii). The fly is an invasive fruit fly, similar to the common fruit fly you would find on rotting fruit in your home…Bottom line: consumers are not interested in rotten fruit with little things squirming around inside. Understandable, right?… So researchers are interested in finding the best solution to manage the fly.

Q: How did your time at K affect this position? Did you find knowledge from certain classes, professors, or experiences to be helpful?

A: I certainly used knowledge from K. Basic knowledge of research methods was important, because I often worked on my own or with peers. There were three other recent graduates/undergrads over the summer. We were able to carry out most of the work on our own.

Q: What are your plans for the future?

A: I’m actually looking to go to law school. It is kind of a change, but working at MSU really solidified that I would like to work within the system to change it. The use of control pesticides is an interesting challenge that I would like to look at from another angle.

Q: How have these plans been influenced by your time at K?

A: There are influences from my time at K, but not in an obvious way. It took me a little bit of time to really be open to thinking about taking my life in the direction of law. I’m glad that I gave myself the time and opportunity to try something new.

Q: What do you miss most about K? What was your most memorable moment there?

A:  I miss having a social network and weekends! I miss having friends around and time to spend with them. I’m working in the restaurant industry for now, and I really miss having Saturday free.

Q: What do you do in your free time? How is this different from when you were a student?

A: I’m studying! I have spent a lot of time studying for the LSAT, because I have the time to dedicate to it. I’m also tutoring some high school students in biology, which is a lot of fun.

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