“Rita Sodt was so motivated in her desire to experience research first-hand that she contacted a researcher early in her freshman year at the UW. She learned about Kristin Swanson, research associate professor of pathology, from the TA in her honors calculus class and took the initiative to arrange an interview, securing a place in the lab by Winter Quarter. Sodt, now a senior, has studied the development of mathematical models that simulate the growth of gliomas, a highly invasive type of brain tumor. She is spending her summer working full-time in Swanson’s lab.
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‘I am very lucky to have Kristin as a mentor,’ Sodt says. “She has trusted me with interesting and challenging projects, which has given me confidence in my research abilities and has taught me valuable research skills that I would not learn in the classroom. She has been a wonderful mentor because she helped me learn to work independently and to think critically about our research.'”