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iGEM Student Spotlight: Marisa Mendes

Class of 2018

Major: Biomedical Engineering

Hometown: Oceanside, California

Marisa’s interest in science began when she was a little girl. She distinctly remembers looking down at her hands and thinking “how do these work?” Though the answer to her question may seem evident, she didn’t get the long explanation until 5th grade, when she took her first “real” science class: biology. Ever since then she was hooked.

Her next big realization occurred in high school one day as she was reading the news and waiting for a carpool to take her to school: scientists had developed a cardiac tissue that could beat like a heart! Thinking this was so cool, Marisa could see herself working on something like this in the future.

At Boston University, Marisa has loved her cell biology class, which is where she first learned about iGEM through her teaching fellow. iGEM appealed to her because, at the time, she didn’t have any lab experience, and it seemed like the perfect opportunity to get back to what she originally wanted to do: tissue engineering.

So far, Marisa has loved her experience with the iGEM Wetlab team.

“We all have our own quirks, but we bounce off each other very well,” she says. The smooth sailing has come somewhat as a surprise, considering they are such as small group and spend upwards of 60 hours a week together working.

Outside of science and engineering, Marisa has one other big passion: theater. She is involved with two groups at BU, the Stage Troupe and On Broadway, where she has worked on multiple shows such as “American Idiot” and “Seussical.”

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Sponsored by National Science Foundation’s Expeditions in Computing Program

(Awards #1522074 / 1521925 / 1521759).