While many Tulane University students leave New Orleans for the summer, Taylor McCrady, a graduate student pursuing a master’s degree in biomedical engineering, traded her vacation time for experience through an internship with LaCell, a company that generates stem cells for scientific research.
At LaCell, McCrady is applying her academic knowledge to a lab setting as an engineering intern. Her days are spent quantifying data and working on image analysis.
“I bring a different perspective to the table, especially for applying data to their projects,” said McCrady, who divides her time between the internship and working on her thesis lab.
“I don’t think I’ve ever run into a situation where a Tulane graduate or professor said, ‘No, I’m not going to help you.’ It’s crazy not to take advantage of the huge network we have.”
Working with LaCell gives McCrady the chance to see how she can apply her engineering major to a science setting. “Because they are biotech but not engineering based, it’s cool to see that they can use my education and my knowledge,” said McCrady.
She discovered the internship opportunity through a Tulane doctoral student.
“I don’t think I’ve ever run into a situation where a Tulane alumni or professor said, ‘No, I’m not going to help you.’ It’s crazy if students don’t take advantage of the huge network we have,” said McCrady.
Her one piece of advice to students: Apply for research and internship grants through programs like the Newcomb College Institute. It helps to offset the costs.
Claire Davenport is a junior at Tulane University, majoring in English and political science.