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CALS Research Fellowship Program
The CALS Research Fellowship Program (undergraduate research student) is implemented to stimulate understanding of the major and interest in researching. We met Go Ye-ju, a student of the class of 2020 Crop Science, Department of Plant Science, who participated in the 21st CALS Research Fellowship Program program.
Go Ye-ju, a student who is considering a career in research, wanted to experience a laboratory-like field beyond what was learned in theory classes after taking the required major lectures. So she thought the undergraduate research student program was a good opportunity to experience the research field. During vacation, she interned at Professor Taejin Yang's functional plant and genomics lab. Here, DNA barcoding, molecular breeding, and genomic analysis are conducted, as well as functional crops such as baeksuo and ginseng. She was interested in listening to Professor Taejin Yang's major class, and was motivated by the fact that the professor introduced various research cases and research processes in class. It was also attractive that research on functional crops could create numerous values.
Go Ye-ju, a student, is conducting research under the subject of ‘Analysis of the genetic diversity of wild ginseng using a Korean ginseng SNP chip’. After studying a related field, she was interested in the field of DNA barcoding, the professor matched her with a graduate student who was researching a related field, so she was able to discuss with her senior and select a topic. During the internship, I performed research-related experiments and data analysis. Experiments using marker chips were conducted, experimental data were analyzed, and the participants were able to directly experience how research is conducted.
Due to the nature of the major, there are activities that are only available during a certain period, such as growing crops, so it was disappointing that related experiments had already been carried out when she went to the lab. As an undergraduate student, there are many situations where she find it difficult to do research, but the professors often bought me food and treated me kindly, so she was able to get a lot of help as she got closer to the professors and graduate students. It was also very helpful to receive counseling about academic and career concerns outside of research. In addition, experience in the laboratory is a great help in selecting a laboratory for graduation thesis. The strengths of the undergraduate research student program are that you can find a field that suits you, and that even if the laboratory is not suitable for you, you also have a chance to experience failure.
Before participating in the program, the theory of the major felt somewhat boring, but after the activity, I experienced a laboratory environment beyond the theory and became interested in research. In the lab, the seniors looked pressed, but it was cool to see them with professionalism. She was proud to conduct research on my own and write a report, and decided to go to graduate school. It is an opportunity that cannot be missed, an opportunity for trial and error, and I think it is an experience that you must do if you dream of research.