What is special about the students at NEIU?
In my time here I have been most impressed with the courage that our students have. I see it in my classes and in my lab. They demonstrate tremendous courage in exploring the unknown, whether that is a new experiment, class, higher ed or just life. It’s amazing!
How do you define “opportunity”?
Opportunity is access and knowledge provides access.
Describe a time when you had to deal with disappointment and how you managed it.
Experimentation is full of disappointment so you have to have a coping mechanism. I try to learn something new from every experiment, however small. It makes it worth the time and energy.
If you could go back and share something with yourself at a previous age, what would you share and at what age would you be?
If I could go back in time I would tell my 14-year-old self that it’s okay to be nerdy.
Tell us about a lesson you’ve learned from someone in your family.
Growing up, my mom was our champion for education. She always encouraged us. I remember her reading to us and helping us with our homework. She never finished high school and wanted to give us every opportunity to excel in school, whether it was buying us typewriters, encyclopedias or our first computer.
I also remember, when I was 10 or so, her putting us to bed and staying up late to study for her GED. I have never asked her about it, but I think that she wanted to prove to herself that she could do it and help pave the way for us to follow. So, in a way she taught me to be a trailblazer, to make my own path so that others could follow.
What are you grateful for?
I am grateful for my family, from my great grandparents to my children.