The Hidden Gems of Undergraduate Research


The perfect time to conduct the experiment turned out to be last summer. As Anderson prepared to have a baby in June, she was looking for someone who could work independently and do most of the research in person. Buchanan immediately occurred to me. “Paisley had worked with me on other things, and she’s just a Rockstar,” Anderson said fondly. “I really wanted to have this opportunity to work with her. “

Buchanan was delighted to gain this practical experience suitable for her graduate studies applications. Programs look for candidates with a solid research background because they know the scientific process and know what to expect in the program. “Research isn’t for everyone,” Anderson says. “It helps to have that experience before you devote five or six years of your life to it. As she spent hours each day examining rodents, Buchanan embraced the independent nature of this project and was delighted to see what she could handle on her own, knowing that Anderson was ready to support her in the process. every step of the way. Throughout the summer, Buchanan discovered a deep love for delayed gratification, especially as she was conducting her scientific analyzes and realizing that she had made a discovery.

Anderson explains that this project is the preliminary stage of the whole process since the main objective was to determine if they were even on something. Now that they know they are, they have to prove their results again. Buchanan has also started sharing his research at conferences and connecting with other scientists who have personal experience and knowledge of the same problem.

Anderson says small universities like Bethel are hidden gems for undergraduates looking to hone their skills, gain experience, and make valuable connections. “As someone who has worked in institutions large and small, the opportunity for undergraduates to do practical research is much greater in small schools like Bethel,” Anderson shares. “You get to know your teachers and you make every part of the experience. I had undergraduates in my previous labs doing the dishes.

Towards the end of her time in Bethel, Buchanan grew up to realize how much she enjoys physics, computer science, and subjects rooted in mathematics. Through her classes and her experience as an Edgren Fellow, she decided to pursue a research career in neuroengineering. She is also in awe of all she accomplished throughout her undergraduate studies at Bethel. “It’s so cool to see that undergraduate research is really useful because you can do things that aren’t usually funded at the doctoral level,” Buchanan says. “There isn’t that much pressure. You can find some cool things that someone isn’t going to invest money in at these higher levels.


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