Meet Nichole!

Who are you?

I am Nichole Nieves, an undergraduate researcher in the lab.

Why did you become a scientist?

I have always been interested in science, but I think I became a scientist because I love learning about the processes behind the daily function of so many organisms. Science is always changing and there are new findings each day, which for me is very exciting because I can continuously challenge myself to understand the “why” behind those changes.

What are you interested in?

I am interested in the physiological adaptations and mechanisms that some populations of fish possess which allow for them to live in extreme environments such as hydrogen-sulfide springs.

Why is your work exciting?

In physiology, there are so many mechanisms that could be contributing to one single adaptation, and being able to try and figure that out for my research as to why some populations of fish have adapted to living in hydrogen-sulfide rich springs is very exciting for me.

What do you like best about what you do?

What I like best about what I do is that I have been able to apply what I have learned in the research lab to my biology classes and vice versa. It is a great feeling when everything you have learned clicks and it all comes together.

What are your aspirations for the future?

My future career aspirations are to become a veterinarian and specialize in animal rehabilitation.

Who or what inspires you?

Something that inspires me is knowing that all of my hard work will pay off. Of course, it is not always easy, but I have such a great support system in God and my family, that I know my perseverance and drive will lead me to achieve my goals.