Undergraduate Research with Ed Fenlon by Michael Pitzer '06
My research experience with the F&M Chemistry Department has proven to be invaluable! While interviewing for both medical school and residency positions I answered question after question about the research that I was fortunate to participate in with Dr. Edward Fenlon. Moreover, I enjoyed the comrade of a great lab team, and every day learned something new from Dr. Fenlon. I still keep in touch with my college lab-mates and enjoy occasional emails and updates from Dr. Fenlon and Carol Strausser.
During medical school I was exempted from a research requirement because of my undergraduate research at F&M. However, after working with Dr. Fenlon, I had the confidence and motivation to pursue further research opportunities. In medical school I got involved in MRSA research - tracking resistance genotypes in the deadly MRSA bacteria. Now in medical residency I’m developing my own HIV and sports medicine research projects.
Dr. Fenlon was an important mentor during those tenuous college days. Somehow, he turned a student who failed his first organic chemistry quiz into a decent chemist! I’ll never forget his face when I told him that I checked a poster for presentation at the annual ACS conference in San Diego with the rest of my luggage at the airport! Fortunately, both the poster and I made it to and from San Diego safely.
F&M consistently attracts great faculty. Working with Dr. Fenlon and pursuing a degree and research opportunities in the F&M Chemistry Department opened doors and continues to provide me with tools to be successful. Although I’m no longer studying chemistry, I continue to be grateful for what I learned from Dr. Fenlon and the opportunities that performing research under his instruction provided.