Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
What do you wear to work? Nothing fancy because science can be messy.
Was there a particular person or event that influenced your career choice? I was drawn to molecular biology in high school by the story of Dolly, the first cloned sheep. Infectious diseases became the focus of my research when I learned about the global HIV epidemic in college.
What are the most difficult challenges of your work? Doing experiments can be tough because, most of the time, your results are unexpected.
What are your favorite aspects of your job? I enjoy finding solutions to problems, like a puzzle. I like discussing ideas with my fellow scientists and thinking up the best experiment to address a question.
Who are YOUR role models? My adviser in graduate school, my parents, and some of my colleagues at the CDC. They are all great scientists who can balance their work and home lives.
Bio: As a young girl, Nisha imagined that she would be a teacher or a writer. Now, she is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nisha received a bachelor’s degree in Cell and Molecular Biology and English from University of Michigan and a doctoral degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Washington. She does most of her work either in the lab or at her desk. During a typical day, “I try to spend half my day running experiments and half my day working on the computer. My experiments involve working with DNA, RNA, infectious diseases, and animals. On the computer, I analyze data, write papers, and email colleagues.” Her career involves patience, problem-solving skills, willingness to do extra work, and interacting with epidemiologists, wildlife biologists, administrators, as well as other scientists. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, cooking, and travelling.