We are excited to welcome Spencer Hayes to the Lab as a MS BMED student. Checkout the short interview below to learn more about Spencer’s research experience and diverse interests.
What is your training/research background? My research background began somewhat scattered, until I found my place in cellular and biomolecular engineering. During my B.S. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Notre Dame, I had brief stints in a developmental biology and biochemical sensing labs. I spent more time in William Phillips’ WATER Lab, developing a process to create a high-throughput, chemically-tailorable polymer membrane for a variety of purifying applications. My most recent work, in the Biomedical Systems Engineering Lab, was to improve the yield of recombinant proteins with industry-standard bioreactors and cell lines. This was done by optimizing media composition and feeding strategy through mathematical models based on metabolic flux and the causes of cell death.
Why did you choose to join the Quiroz Lab at GT/Emory BME? My previous job and research experience had, in my mind, defined a narrow path for my post-graduate career, namely process development or something similar in the biotech industry. While I would be gladly return to that path, I saw in the Quiroz lab an opportunity to expand my horizons and open doors that I might not even know about. While remaining in a familiar field I am passionate about, through this lab I could get a fresh perspective on cellular engineering with an exciting, burgeoning topic. In addition, I was looking for a lab that encouraged novelty, creativity, and a healthy balance between teamwork and individual responsibility. Dr. Quiroz, his team, and their work exemplified these qualities, and I knew it would be a perfect place to hone my scientific skills.
When you are not studying or doing research, what do you like to do? My two favorite hobbies are playing the piano and slow-pitch softball. I play anything I think sounds fun on the piano, from classical to jazz to Pink Floyd arrangements. I play third base for my softball team The Benchwarmers, along with some of my oldest friends from my little-league days. Otherwise, I’m a huge Braves fan and go to their games often, I constantly try to improve my cooking, and I enjoy the occasional round of golf.
Wallace H. Coulter Dept. of Biomedical Engineering
Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University