Major: Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Year: Fifth year, Ph.D. student
Expected Graduation: Spring 2018
Hometown: Iran, Isfahan
Involvement on Campus: I served as a secretary of the Iranian Student Society (Jan 2016- Jan 2017). While I was the secretary of ISS, we were able to host four major events (over 200 guests for each), namely Persian Classic Concert with Maestro Alizadeh (Grammy Award winner of 2006), Nowruz Celebration (Persian New Year), Movie Night at Athena Cinema and Yalda Celebration. I was able to manage and lead two groups of volunteered women to contribute in International Women’s Day Festival and International Dinner 2016. I am also a laboratory manager at Dr. Goetz’s research group (2014-present) and work on training, mentoring and supervising three undergraduates and four masters students.

How did you choose Ohio University?

My husband was a Ph.D. student in the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department and he recommended OHIO.

How did you choose your major? And, what excites you most about it?

I talked to many people, both current and graduated students in different majors from different universities, to see what courses they needed to take and how they like their major. I love chemistry and physics and wanted to choose a multidisciplinary major which would give me the flexibility and possibility of working on different research areas without the need to change my major. As a chemical engineer, I started my research in separation processes and waste water treatment as an undergraduate student, then biotechnology as a master’s student and finally biomedical engineering as a Ph.D. student.

Have you ever used career or leadership training services on campus (e.g., taken a career class, gone to the CLDC, met with a career or leadership coach, etc.)?

Yes, I earned the 21st Century Leadership and Professional Leadership Certificates from the CLDC. I also met with Regina Warfel at the CLDC a couple of times for career coaching.

Have you taken on any leadership roles or gone through leadership training at OHIO? If so, please describe.

Yes, being a teaching assistant for undergraduate and graduate level courses (2014-2015) was one of my proudest leadership accomplishments because I have honed the first and most important set of my leadership skills as a result of having a full responsibility of a classroom as an instructor, working with undergraduate students, leading the recitation sessions and keeping office hours to address students’ questions. My successful teaching achievements not only inspired me to continue my leadership involvements but also motivated me to constantly improve my leadership skills via attending interactive leadership workshops. Attending CLDC workshops and earning 21st Century Leadership and Professional Leadership Certificates equipped me with the rest of the leadership skills that I have looked-for. This is one of the accomplishments that I am really proud because it helped me to learn more about emotional intelligence, the team development cycle and how to improve the functionality of a group via new leadership techniques.

Tell us about one of your most significant career development experiences at OHIO?

One of my most significant career development experiences is being a laboratory manager at Dr. Goetz’s research group. Since 2014, I have spent my spare time on maintaining laboratory supplies and inventory and closely train, mentor, and supervise three undergraduates and four masters students. Because of my great performances in Dr. Goetz’s lab, I was nominated by one of my undergraduate students for participating at “Celebrating Women: Leaders On and Off the Court” event and with another graduate student for the “Outstanding Graduate Student Leader” award. In Dr. Goetz’s Laboratory Evaluation (December 2017), I received an excellent evaluation from my students; as indicated by one student: “I would say [she] has a deep commitment to students. Specifically, to helping with any problem she is capable of solving, which is almost every question I have ever had.”

What would you like to do once you graduate?

The immense satisfactory feeling of teaching and leadership has been the drive of my passionate interest in teaching for as long as I can remember. My desire to train successful students inspired me to consider faculty positions where I get the chance to train innovative students who can think critically to solve complex real-world problems in their future career. I am looking forward to the opportunities to further help undergraduate students to develop their skills and provide them with a growing path to achieve their full potential to become world-class professionals in scientific fields. I strive to be a teacher who always sees room for improvement and looks out for experiences to that end. This will also provide me a chance to continue my involvement with leadership activities in non-profit organizations, especially to support women and underrepresented students in leadership activities.

What advice would you give to your fellow Bobcats?

I would recommend them to stay positive and ask for help if they need it. They can visit the CLDC and use the services that they offer. If they are looking for a job, I suggest to get leadership certificates, have career coaching meetings to first find out how and where to look for their dream job, then with the help of their coach, they can prepare their cover letter and improve their CV/Resume. They can also get help from the CLDC to get prepared for their interviews by having mock interviews. Furthermore, if they are looking to pursue graduate study, they can get help from the CLDC to write or revise their SOPs. To sum it up, fellow Bobcats: stop by the CLDC and ask for help because the people there are willing to help you!

What is your favorite thing about being a Bobcat?

Having each other’s backs and being part of a big and welcoming family.

Interview conducted by Hannah Schuller, CLDC Content Marketing Intern

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