Doing independent studies/research and having a place to showcase results like Luke Stebbins Symposium and Meeting of the Minds helped me work on other skills relevant to work, like compiling data and presenting information to others.
Believe it or not, for Araba Sagoe-Wagner (BSc ‘17, MSc ’20), hydrogen peroxide served as a catalyst for her excitement of and exploration of science. And you thought it was just for treating wounds! Araba’s passion for science has propelled her through undergraduate and graduate degrees at uLethbridge. Araba is currently a research assistant in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Lethbridge.
What excites you about science?
Being able to know how and why things work! As a kid, it was opening up a faulty watch to see the gears, checking out the broken laptop to look at the motherboard and tinkering with it. As an adult, it's seeing the results of an experiment I worked hard on. Knowing why it did or didn't work, troubleshooting and making discoveries!
What sparked your interest in science and your related field?
I became interested in research after an independent study during my undergrad. Gaining hands-on experience and having a project and technical training inspired me to find out what else there could possibly be as far as research goes.
Tell us about the first time you felt really excited about what you were learning?
In a biology class during my undergrad, a professor explained why hydrogen peroxide was used to clean wounds and the chemical reaction that occurred. I unknowingly said something out loud in agreement because my late grandmother always reached for the hydrogen peroxide bottle for injuries when I was younger. I don't think we (late grandmother and myself) knew why we used it. We just did. Gaining an understanding of the scientific reason behind such mundane things got me excited.
What surprised you about participating in scientific research at uLethbridge?
Accessibility to research! Coming from a different background, many hands-on activities were always either in large groups or not available. Doing independent studies/research and having a place to showcase results like Luke Stebbins Symposium and Meeting of the Minds helped me work on other skills relevant to work, like compiling data and presenting information to others.
What words of inspiration would you like to share with the next generation of women and girls in science?
Be open to exploring different areas of science. Get involved in volunteering, join a science club (bio, chem, math, engineering, etc.) and have fun doing science! It's okay to make mistakes. Learn from them and keep going!
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