UCF Degree is Invaluable to Grad’s Career

UCF Chemistry Alumna, Lauren Austin, '09.

UCF Chemistry Alumna, Lauren Austin, ’09.

During her time at UCF, Lauren Austin, ’09, worked as an undergraduate research assistant. She published two papers and worked on the creation of a one-step homogenous immunoassay for cancer biomarker detection. Austin looks back at her undergraduate research experience at UCF and describes it as invaluable to her career and current success.

Austin graduated from UCF with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry before pursuing her Ph.D from Georgia Institute of Technology. Now the UCF grad has obtained her Ph.D in Biochemistry and has accepted a postdoctoral position at Harvard University/Massachusetts General Hospital.

Austin continued her research experience beyond UCF as a graduate research assistant at Georgia Institute of Technology. There she conducted research and wrote many publications, all while managing to regularly volunteer, win awards and make outstanding grades.

Austin opened up about her time at UCF and shared some important advice for students and alumni.

Why did you choose to attend UCF?

I chose UCF because it was close to my family and was an up and coming university.

How has your UCF degree helped you in your career?

The UCF degree and the research experience I gained at UCF have been invaluable to my career. Both taught me to work hard and gave me the confidence I needed to continue on to graduate school.

Have you stayed connected with UCF since graduation? If so, how?

I have stayed connected to UCF through my undergraduate research advisor (she actually attended my wedding this past month) and through my friends who are still in the area.

What is your best UCF memory?

My best UCF memory is probably the day I finished my last final. It was a relief to be done studying and know that I would be a UCF graduate.

What is your favorite thing about your job?

My favorite things about my job are being able to constantly learn new things and work on cutting edge equipment.

What is your most memorable experience on the job?

My most memorable experience is receiving reviewer comments back from a review I wrote with my boss and group members that stated our review was a “must read”.

What piece of advice would you give to current students as well as UCF alumni?

The piece of advice I would give current students as well as UCF alumni is something one of my best friends told me as I was about to start graduate school…look at the work/time you put in to your job as an investment in your future. In most cases, you get in what you put out.

Here are some fun questions we asked Austin.

If you could only watch one TV show, what would it be?

The Office. It is my go to whenever I am stressed out or need a pick me up.

What do you do for fun?

I go to at least one concert a year. This year was the On The Run Tour! I also spend time with my husband, cats, family and friends.

Who inspires you?

My parents. I owe them the world!

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