“My experience at MDIBL was integral to me now pursuing a career as a scientist — I came in knowing nothing about lab research, was given my own project and really got to discover the wonders of science for myself.”
MDI Biological Laboratory’s summer fellowship programs strive to offer a well-rounded, unique research experience for students. Working on real-world, meaningful science alongside avid and invested mentors, and the chance to make long-lasting friendships in a stunning coastal location, make a summer at MDIBL what it is: a fun, educational, memorable, and in many cases, a life-changing experience.
Jaspreet Kohli spent the summer of 2015 at MDIBL, which was the catalyst for pursuing science as a career – a path that he’s still passionately pursuing.
Jaspreet was drawn to MDIBL by the quality of the learning opportunities – working alongside faculty mentors, involved in the bench work progressing real research. But he admits that the lab’s location is definitely an added bonus. “I think MDIBL is a beautiful place to spend the summer, especially as a high school student,” Jaspreet explains. “I got to have interactions with not only other peers my age, but college students and visiting scientists who were also there for the summer.”
Having a supportive mentor relationship plays a significant role in creating a successful summer experience for students. Jaspreet, who has a personal interest in immunology, was paired with Dr. Jim Coffman, whose research focuses on the effect of exogenous stress and cortisol (a stress hormone). Their aligned interests spanned beyond science too – both are passionate musicians. “Dr. Coffman was a wonderful mentor in many ways,” Jaspreet says. “For me, the mentorship I received was the strongest component of the summer program.”
When asked what he’d say to supporters of our Education programs, Jaspreet hopes they realize how appreciated they are. “Let’s not forget the power of education,” he reminds us. “Donors help give students access to this science system at MDIBL; a community that helps you learn the best ways to do science, the proper ways to ask questions. Your attention and support lights that curiosity for the next generation of physicians and scientists.”
Jaspreet completed his Bachelor of Arts in Biological Sciences at Cornell University in 2020. He’s currently working as a Research Technician and heading into a physician scientist program in pursuit of his dream career.