Bioengineering major Nicholas Phillips ’15 has focused his undergraduate research on growing bacteria to make bio-plastic—and how to make that economically viable.
The Somerset resident received a grant from the Office of Undergraduate Research and worked with faculty advisor Prof. Christopher Brigham. Nicholas is among the first class of students to graduate with a major in UMassD's bioengineering program.
Research: learning outside the classroom
"Undergraduate research is a great way to increase your learning outside of the classroom," Nicholas said. "It gives you an edge in getting into graduate school and the expertise you need in the competitive workplace."
He's continued to follow his research interests and was awarded second place in UMass Dartmouth's "Three-Minute Thesis," in which students present the highlights of their research topics.
Future plans: PhD in biomedical engineering & biotechnology
Nicholas plans to continue his education at the graduate level in the biomedical engineering and biotechnology (BMEBT) PhD program offered jointly by the Dartmouth, Lowell, and Worcester campuses of UMass.
"I became so fond of my work, that I wish to continue doing it," he said. "It was my opportunity to do research as an undergraduate that led me to pursue the graduate program."