I think more than anything this semester my experience in the realm of research has taught me a lot about time management. Especially during proposal writing time earlier in the semester it was hard to balance my general academics with my research tasks. However, this skill has deemed to be very helpful to me throughout the rest of my semester as I am branching out and joining many new and exciting programs. I was so honored to have had the opportunity to go with other Research Rookies to see the Undergraduate Research Day at the Argonne National Laboratory. That experience opened my eyes to the endless possibilities I could make for myself as an undergraduate conducting research. The diversity and creativity represented by each project were inspiring to say the least.

Overall I can’t say that I’ve had any negative experiences throughout my research experience thus far. Even if I did at this age and this stage in my career here as a student I would view my mistakes as a chance to do things right the next time. In our last meeting a recent Northern graduate, now attending med school, came in to talk to us and said something about the importance of embracing and learning from failure. This is something that I have worked very hard on this year and something my research experience has really aided in. From what I’ve heard from classmates and mentors a lot of research projects don’t end the way you’re hoping. But what most of them say after that is that you often times can learn more from the negative result than you would’ve from the one you hypothesized about. C.S. Lewis once said “Failures, repeated failures, are finger posts on the road to achievement. One fails forward towards success.”

Keep Calm and Research On!

Katie Denius