Anna “Katie” Whitehead
My name is Anna Whitehead, although most people know me as Katie. I was raised in Downsville, Louisiana and attended the local high school from kindergarten through twelfth grade. I was the valedictorian of my graduating class. After high school, I enrolled at Louisiana Tech University, majoring in biology with a minor in chemistry. I graduated with my Bachelor of Science with a perfect 4.0 gpa in Winter Quarter 2016.
The opportunity to attend Louisiana Tech University and be a part of the College of Applied and Natural Sciences has been a true blessing to me. The ANS faculty has been extremely helpful and supportive. For the past two years, I have been working on a cardiac tissue engineering project with my PI, Dr. Jamie Newman, and co-PI, Dr. Mary Caldorera-Moore. I was honored to be a part of this project, and I am excited to have the opportunity to continue on as a master’s student. This research project allowed me to discover and develop my passion for research. I plan to attend medical school, with the goal of pursuing a career of clinical work and medical research.
My parents, Donald and JoAnn Whitehead, have always been my biggest cheerleaders, career counselors, and overall supporters. They taught me the value of hard work, solid morals, and unwavering faith. Words could never express how grateful I am to be their daughter. Nearly two years ago, Dr. Newman gave me the opportunity to work in her lab and having her as a mentor has been an invaluable experience. I have grown both personally and professionally thanks to her guidance and support. She and Dr. Caldorera-Moore are incredible role models and I am honored to have the privilege to work with them. The master’s student I worked with, Nehal Patel, spent countless hours training and helping me. His work ethic on our research project is what inspired me to apply to the MSNT program.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” ~Romans 8:28 (NIV)
My name is Erik Beadle. I am currently a master’s degree student in molecular science and nanotechnology (MSNT). I grew up in a small town in south Louisiana called Des Allemands and graduated from Hahnville High School in 2010. During my senior at Hahnville, I enrolled at Louisiana Tech initially majoring in Biomedical Engineering. However, I found that my true passion resided in the biological sciences, prompting a major change to Biology. Towards the end of my undergraduate career, I became more involved in research after long debating medical school and graduate school. I completed my undergraduate degree during summer quarter of 2014 and stayed at Louisiana Tech for my master’s degree knowing that I would acquire the knowledge needed to become a better student and scientist for future my academic endeavors. I am pleased to say that I will be pursuing my doctorate at Vanderbilt University, likely with a concentration in stem cell biology, beginning this fall.
I can largely attribute my successes to not only myself, but to the many individuals who have guided and mentored me over the last several years. My family has provided tremendous amounts of guidance and support not only towards academic accomplishments but also towards personal development and pushing me always to exceed the expectations of others, and for that I am thankful. Each of them has shared their personal experiences and wisdom, allowing me to make the right choices when faced with tough decisions.
I would also like to thank Dr. Jeff Schultz and Dr. Bill Wolf for their advice and guidance throughout the duration of both my undergraduate and graduate career. I also want to thank Dr. Bruce Bunnell at Tulane University for allowing me to work in his lab and for providing me with advice and mentorship towards career advice and doctoral applications. Last, but certainly not least, I want to thank Dr. Jamie Newman for allowing me to work with her over the last two years, for providing countless amounts of support and encouragement, and for being such a great mentor! I have no doubts that without her guidance, I would not be where I am today and where I will be in the future. All of these individuals have helped to prepare me for the future obstacles to come during the next step of my education.
“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.”- Winston Churchill