Over the course of eight weeks this past summer, 10 students from UC Merced worked closely with JGI scientists on research projects that contribute to the larger mission of the U.S. Department of Energy. Students also worked with their mentors to practice and develop presentation skills as well as build their network in the field of genomics and scientific research.
The topics students worked on ranged far and wide — from implementing new data visualization tools, to using natural language processing techniques to categorize genetic information. Learn more about their work here in a series of videos produced by JGI Communications & Outreach intern Ashleigh Papp.
|Video (click on image to watch)
|UC Merced intern and their JGI mentor/s
|Evaluating new ways to categorize metagenomic information:
Sidharth Babu (undergraduate) and Zhong Wang
|Unpacking large, structural variation data sets:
Brendan Blasius (undergraduate) and Guohong “Albert” Wu
|Exploring “junk” DNA in biofuel grasses:
Jacob Espinosa (undergraduate) and Virginia Scarlett
|Surveying artificial mutations in a grass model system
Lesly Lopez Fang (graduate) and Li Lei
|Fixing placements in the taxonomic tree of life:
Jasper Toscani Field (graduate) and Brian Bushnell
|Profiling large-scale public metagenomes:
Frank Gutierrez (graduate) and Simon Roux
|Applying deep learning to predictive gene expression:
Harrison Ho (graduate) and Ian Blaby and Ernst Oberortner
|Implementing a new data visualization tool:
Edgar Jimenez (undergraduate) and Sharon Greenblum and Matt Mingay
|Analyzing existing data to discover new symbionts:
Sarina Qin (graduate) and Frederik Schulz
|Understanding plants through single-cell transcriptomics:
Lorenzo Scaturchio (undergraduate) and Benjamin Cole
The students participated in this internship remotely due to COVID-19 restrictions, but virtual events and technology enabled a fruitful experience for mentors and students alike. Tools like Slack, Google Docs, and GitHub enabled virtual collaboration. JGI also hosted events to enable students to showcase their work and even a celebratory toast at the end of the summer.
The JGI-UC Merced internship program was founded in 2014 with the goal of inspiring students to embark on a career in genomics, and to help foster a diverse future workforce in science. Since the program’s inception, more than 30 students have contributed to the research of JGI scientists.
by: Ashleigh Papp