Faculty Mentor: Christos Constantinidis
When you entered Wake Forest as a first-year student, did you anticipate being able to pursue research with a faculty member?
Yes, I very much looked forward to pursuing undergraduate research, but I did not think that I would have the opportunity so early in my studies.
How and when did you learn about mentored research and the URECA Center?
I actually found a research position second semester freshman year. I met my mentor, Christos Constantinidis, through my work study position at Baptist. I also had friends who conducted research the summer after freshman year, which encouraged me to apply the summer after sophomore year.
What led you to become involved in research as an undergraduate?
I plan to attend medical school after Wake Forest, and I knew I wanted to conduct research as an undergraduate. My research in neuroscience consists of studying the structure of neurons in the brain and short term memory in monkeys and humans.
Can you describe the relationship you have had with some of your faculty members? What did you learn? How did you learn that?
Christos Constantinidis is a professor at the medical center of neuroscience and has been extremely supportive. He allows me to exercise creativity and is always willing to provide feedback. The post-doctoral students I work with have also been very helpful. For example, one taught me how to code our department’s computer programs.
How has URECA influenced your ideas about scholarship and your life passions or work?
URECA granted me a summer stipend that enabled me to pursue research while living on campus. I appreciate that the center encourages independence and provides resources for its students.
Is there anything else you would like to say about your experience doing mentored research?
I highly recommend everyone to pursue research, regardless of subject matter. It is a great opportunity to partner with a faculty mentor and learn the tricks of the trade!