17 Jul, 2013 by LIYSF
Raj Pammal: I can't wait to make lasting connections with participants
Raj from New York talks about his experience at LIYSF last year, and what he’s looking forward to this year when he joins us staff!
Tell us a bit about yourself
My name is Rajkumar S. Pammal, but I usually go by Raj. I am the youngest of my family of four, from Long Island, New York (USA). My father is a financial managing consultant, my mother is a pharmacist, and my sister recently graduated from Harvard University with a Bachelors Degree in History and Science. I have just graduated from high school, and will be attending Harvard University to study pre-medicine, chemistry, and economics. My hobbies include playing tennis as well as the alto saxophone, both of which I plan on continuing alongside my studies at university.
What areas of science are you interested in?
Personally, the area of science that I find most interesting is chemistry, specifically chemical biology and chemical engineering. I am amazed at the wide-ranging applications of the fundamental principles governing chemistry, ranging from water purification to anticancer drug delivery. The past two summers, I have conducted research at Stony Brook University on Long Island, NY. My first research project focused on developing a modification reaction for the surface properties of cellulose nanofibers, with applications to desalination, or the purification of saltwater to fresh, drinkable water (search “Pammal” here for more).
My most recent research project dealt with anticancer drug synthesis and combining multiple functionalities of cancer chemotherapy into a singular platform for drug delivery (Click here for the link.)
I hope to continue my studies and research in chemistry, as I pursue a career in medicine.
What were your favourite memories of LIYSF?
My favourite memories of LIYSF 2012 include:
- Attending world-class lectures on unique topics ranging from recent advancements in eye surgery and emergency blood supply issues, to the ongoing battle against AIDS in Africa and conservation of the human planet
- Visiting scientific institutions such as the Oxford Biomedical Research Institute
- Touring the Olympic Village and playing sports in Hyde Park
- Dancing and Socializing with then-strangers at the Opening Night Party, and doing the same with now- close friends at the Closing Night Party
- Late night trips to stores around South Kensington and the Imperial College London Campus, specifically frozen yogurt at Snog
- Traveling around London with newly-made friends (Hard Rock Café)
- Visiting historical landmarks and tourist attractions such as Stonehenge
- Received a country flag from the Cyprus delegation, signed by each member and presented to me on the last night of LIYSF 2012.
What are you looking forward to most during LIYSF 2013?
Returning to the Forum for a second time, I am most excited to meet a new group of diverse, young scientists from all over the world. Alongside my fellow staff members, I cannot wait to make lasting connections with participants and impact their LIYSF experience. I think the most satisfying aspect of being a staff member for me will be watching this year’s participants go through the same process I went through last year, of creating lifelong friends while learning about unique topics in science from the world’s leading educators and scientists. Additionally, I am thrilled to attend the lectures and visits to scientific institutions and historical landmarks again. LIYSF 2013 is sure to be an unforgettable experience!