Eboard Interview: Meet Eunice Kim!

NAME: Eunice Kim
EDUCATION: B.A. in Molecular and Cellular Biology at UC Berkeley; currently in the Molecular and Cellular Biology Ph.D. Program at Stony Brook
RESEARCH INTERESTS: Ciliogenesis, developmental biology, cell biology, biochemistry
CURRENT RESEARCH: My current research is focused on studying the molecular mechanisms that dictate the formation and function of cilia, which are small microtubule-based structures that are on the surface of many cell types. Defects in ciliary structure and function lead to diseases known as ciliopathies, which may target multiple organ systems in the body and result in devastating effects.
FUTURE GOALS: My current goal is to do a postdoc after completing my Ph.D.. I also hope to further science communication by writing science articles and books tailored to the public in the future. Siddhartha Mukherjee’s books, especially The Emperor of All Maladies, led me to take more science courses in college. I wish my writing can instill the same desire to learn more about the world around us in other people as Mukherjee’s writing has done for me. 

Why did you want to be a part of GWiSE?
Part of the reason why I became interested in research was that I had great undergraduate research experience. I was surrounded by fantastic mentors who really encouraged me to pursue my interests and helped me find a sense of belonging, and I want to give back to the community by helping others in the same way.

What/who got you interested in your field? 
I went to college thinking that I would be a history major, but my interest in history fueled my interest in delving deeper into biology–it might seem a little odd, but there are a lot of parallels between these two fields, and I was really intrigued by how biology, like history, is a lot more nuanced than a simple linear chain of chronological events. That first genetics class I took in college, as well as Siddhartha Mukherjee’s book The Emperor of All Maladies, led me to take other science courses and helped develop my interest in pursuing research. 

When did you know you were interested in pursuing a degree in science/engineering? 
While I initially entered college as a history major, a genetics class that I took really sparked my interest in biology. I was fascinated to see how mutations—ranging from single nucleotide polymorphisms to the deletion of whole genomic regions—could result in a cascade of events that disrupt biological processes.

What do you think needs to happen for there to be more women in science/engineering?
Early exposure to science, better childcare/maternity leave policies, and gender equity within the home.

Name one achievement/award/moment that you are proud of and why:
Getting my driver’s license. Do you know how scary it is to drive around here? It’s insane!

Name one thing you started in the last year that you are glad you did and why:
I started following the drawing tutorials on Draw-A-Box because I’m terrible at drawing. I’m still terrible (I’ve been slacking off on the practice lessons), but it’s really helped with my sense of perspective when making schematics and models for scientific figures.

If you could only live in one area (city/beach/mountains/desert/plains) for the rest of your life, where would you live and why?
The mountains. I like going on nice long walks and seeing the foliage change as the seasons go by. Plus, there’s something about reaching the top of a hill/mountain and being able to see everything from a bird’s-eye view.

If your childhood had a smell, what would it be? 
Rain, asphalt, autumn, and sea salt.

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Author: sbugwise

We are the Graduate Women in Science and Engineering group at Stony Brook University and we are dedicated to supporting women in STEM fields.

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