The DNALC's multi-disciplinary staff has experience in elementary, secondary, and collegiate instruction; biochemistry and molecular biological research; computer programming; design, photography, fine arts, and interior design; science journalism; public relations and development; and opinion research.

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Michael Okoro

DNALC Scholar

My interest in science dates as far back as I can remember. As a child in Nigeria, I played with my mother’s magnifying glass, inspecting leaves, grass, ants, and anything else I could find in the room - including my left over food particles. This fondness grew every day as my dad, who was a journalist and teacher, made sure I read daily newspapers and periodicals. I watched the news keenly and I would report to him in writing what I had learned and heard. This widened my knowledge of science, current affairs, and the world in general.

My love for science continued into senior secondary school. I went on field trips and excursions, but my best experience came from our visit to the Coca Cola production and bottling facility. I remember being lost in thought as I watched the massive machines move in synchrony at unbelievable speed with living human effort.

During my undergraduate studies at the University, I satisfied my scientific curiosity. From genetically transforming bacteria to learning how to solve crimes using DNA fingerprinting techniques, I was now deeply engrossed. I went on to do a DNA barcoding project of traditional medicinal plants which metamorphosed into my undergraduate thesis.

After my undergraduate degree in Biotechnology at Godfrey Okoye University in Enugu, Nigeria, I went on a national voluntary service in Kontagora, an impoverished region in the northern part of Nigeria. It was while teaching high school biology that I discovered my passion for teaching.

So when the opportunity came for me to hone my scientific teaching skills at the DNA Learning Center, I grabbed it with both hands, having attended summer camps here previously. I am currently at New York University for my post graduate degree, where I am screening for mutant genes in the promoter region of a transfected Arabidopsis plant.

I spend my leisure reading inspirational novels, playing computer games, or cooking. I also practice playing my saxophone, a new found passion.

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