Tootle Studies Biomedical Engineering at the University of Florida.
Clubs and interests: Build for Bees, hiking and camping
Q. How did you first know you wanted to be a scientist or engineer?
A. I wouldn’t say there was a specific defining time that made me realize that I definitely wanted a career in science or engineering, but as a kid I was always interested and encouraged to explore science. In elementary school, my mom would volunteer to run science labs at my school and always tried to elevate my experience with scientific topics. In addition, my dad also has a degree in engineering, so I had a lot of family always there to motivate me. To this day, I couldn’t really see myself majoring in anything else. It just fits.
What has been your favorite experience or interaction this summer and why?
I’ve really enjoyed interacting with everyone in our cohort. We like to say that we are alternate universe versions of each other, and it’s nice to be around people that tend to think in a similar way to myself. We have done a lot together, whether that simply be meals every day or day trips to different places. I’ve definitely met people that I hope to stay friends with in the future.
What positive impact do you hope to make in the future? Is there a big societal problem that you would like to help solve?
The Girl Scout in me has always wanted to make the world a better place. I don’t think there is a specific problem I am aiming to solve, but I hope to do something in the future to more majorly accomplish that goal.
How do you think that your experience this summer may help you to meet your personal mission?
I think that I have definitely learned a lot about the research experience, which was the reason I wanted to participate in an REU in the first place. It is nice to be embedded in the environment and work with people who know that you are trying to learn from the experience.
What’s next for you?
I plan to graduate with my degree in 2024 and then go on to grad school.