Studentenverhaal

Testimonial Henrikje Smits

During my bachelor thesis project I investigated temperature effects on virus-host interactions in C.elegans. I liked the idea of combining two fields of research; nematology and virology. What sounded like a straight-forward project, namely to infect C.elegans strains with a newly discovered virus at different temperatures and measure the viral load afterwards, developed into a more complex quest.

... you cannot only broaden your horizon in the field of your research topic, but also improve your knowledge about how a research group really works
Henrikje Smits

August 2013

student Henrikje Smit2.jpg

So many things you have to think about before you can finally say that your experimental set-up fulfills the requirements. So many times that your experiments fail und you really start to doubt your own ability. But the nice thing is that at the group of nematology you are not alone and together you make it work. During lunch everybody gathers in the coffee room and jokes and laughter cheer you up and if you have a problem in the lab everybody tries to help. During the time I spent there I have learned so many things. I was introduced to the mystery of statistics, I finally overcame my problem of being lost in translation (sometimes I spoke three languages a day and got a bit confused), good pipetting should not be a challenge anymore and I was entrusted with refining an RNA FISH protocol (against na├»ve imagination: protocols sent by companies do not always work well) which made me think about each step of an experiment. The people around even provided me an insight into the costs and how you order chemicals. So, if you want you cannot only broaden your horizon in the field of your research topic, but also improve your knowledge about how a research group really works as a team and in the economic sense.  

I am grateful for the time I spent there and want to thank the team that made this group such a comfortable place to be around. I will not forget Sinterklaas, Christmas Dinner, my name badge on the pipettes (thank you Rikus) or the laughs during lunch.