My Research Experience: From Engines to Nail Polish

Sarah Research, Uncategorized 0 Comments


Hey everyone!

Happy hump day. Today, I wanted to take a little time to talk about the various research projects I have been involved with thus far.

I knew in high school that I wanted to get involved in research as soon as possible. In fact, the fact that I could start working under a professor in their lab as early as my first or second week of first semester freshman year was a huge reason why I chose to come to USC!

I started working in my first lab second semester freshman year. It took me a little while to find a research project I wanted to get involved with, and I soon learned that was because I was limiting myself to working in a chemical engineering lab because that was my major. I ended up actually working in a mechanical engineering laboratory designing microscale combustion engines and producing them using 3D printing. This lab was a ton of fun to work in because I got to apply my chemistry knowledge to a field I had never really associated with chemistry before.

Although I loved working in the mechanical engineering lab, the farther along I got in my nanotechnology emphasis, the more I decided I wanted to do research associated with nanotechnology during my time as an undergraduate as well. The best thing about the nanotechnology emphasis within chemical engineering is that I have the opportunity to work under a professor for 2 semesters for course credit. I’m currently in the process of transitioning over to my new lab within the chemical engineering department! The project I’m going to be working on is how to make more environmentally friendly and organic nail polishes that still have the same fast drying, even coating properties of large brand nail polishes that are popular today!

Stay tuned for updates on how my research progresses as the semester goes along!

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