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Valarie Pelletier Valarie Pelletier

Valarie is an undergraduate student in the Drexel University Department of Materials Science & Engineering, doing research in Dr. Yury Gogotsi's NanoMaterials Group

What are you doing in the lab?

Synthesis of Carbon Nanotubes via Carbon Vapor Deposition, synthesis of copper nanoparticles, filling carbon nanotubes with copper nanoparticles for use as detonators/explosives, Material characterization using Scanning electron microscopy, EDS, XRD, etc.

Why did you decide to perform research in the lab as an undergraduate?

Undergraduate research is a great way to get involved early. Helps build your resume, which is beneficial when applying to co-op jobs, giving you an edge over other undergraduates. It’s also fun and exciting to be in the labs working on cuttinge-edge science and technology. It’s a great learning experience, which enhances your overall academic career by learning things you do not learn in the classroom.

What is the best part about working in the lab?

The hands-on experience, things you don’t learn in the classroom, networking, help form senior Ph.D. students.

Why are you majoring in MSE?

I love chemistry, physics, and math and materials science and engineering is a combination of all sciences and math. There are so many directions in which you can go just within materials science and engineering. It doesn’t limit you to just one career path. MSE allows you to tailor your career and academic options to exactly what you want to do based on your interests and strengths. It’s new and upcoming and has many possibilities and opens many doors. Rather than choosing a purely science related major, engineering also lets you to do research and/or industry work, giving you the opportunity to really get involved in a vast array of topics and fields. MSE gives me the opportunity to get involved in all aspects of the discipline, from research to industry, innovation, design, and development. It’s practical and, after all, everything is a material!

What advice do you have for prospective students?

Get involved in research early to determine what you are really passionate about and what you enjoy. It allows you to experiment with your career and academics.

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Last updated Monday, May 17, 2010