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Sydney Thomas: Vital Hands-On Research

April 13, 2016

Sydney Thomas is a Lyman Briggs senior majoring in environmental biology and plant biology. She is doing undergraduate research in Brad Day’s lab. Day, an associate professor of plant, soil and microbial sciences, focuses on the molecular-genetic and biochemical processes associated with the interaction between plants and pathogens.

sydney thomas working in the lab

The research we’re doing in Professor Day’s lab is important to understanding the relationship between plants and their pathogens, and how plants protect themselves by developing resistance to these pathogens. The greater implications of this for the world could be improved agricultural systems, by increasing resistance to pathogens. 

This research experience is a steppingstone to my future goals of going to graduate school for plant biology. It provides me with essential mentors and guidance for how to accomplish my goals. I'll have the opportunity to conduct my own research project next semester, which is awesome. I'll have guidance for my next big life decisions and academic connections that will help me during grad school. 

Being a part of research has been a personal goal for me since I arrived at MSU, because not only is it a job, but because I'm actively getting closer to accomplishing my future ambitions. Being involved in this research is important to my academic goals as a plant biologist, because hands-on research experience is vital for my future plans.

Learn more about undergraduate research at MSU

Learn about more student researchers and the researchers they work for, including Day, by checking out this year's President's Report: Tomorrow