How/Why Research? Research in physics is constantly pushing the absolute limits of science and our knowledge of the Universe, so it is very inspiring field to be in and I really wanted to become a part of those efforts. I first started doing research in my junior year of high school at Western Kentucky University, where I was dually-enrolled at the time. Within my first semester, I emailed the chair of the physics department asking to meet and talk about his research and luckily he was looking for students, so I got to work with him for the next two years.
Research Experience: My first project at WKU was in astronomy, studying the variable light flux of the binary black hole blazar OJ287. Over the summer between my junior and senior year of high school I got a grant to work at the University of Kentucky desgining a neutron detector for the Beam Lifetime 3 experiment at NIST. Now, I work on the NuDot project working to prove background reducing techniques for the search for neutrinoless double beta decay. Last summer I was designing and building electromagnets to act as magnetic shielding for the project. This summer, I will be working on light yield analysis for new quantum-dot doped liquid scintillators. Neutrinoless double beta decay, if detected, will tell us why there is matter in the Universe.
Student Organizations/Clubs: Visibility in Physics, Society of Physics Students, Physics Foundations Seminars, Club Taekwondo
Also Happy to Chat about: Finding paid research opportunities
Random Fun Fact: I have flown a plane. Twice.