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Name: Colette Young

Age: 21

Home: Fremont, Calif.

Major: Pre-pharmacy, Biological Sciences major with a minor in Computer Science

Expected graduation: May 2014

Plans: Attend pharmacy school or seek employment.

Colette Young, Team Venus ’13

Colette Young, Team Venus ’13
“I hope to somehow implement computer skills into the work I do – bioinformatics and pharmaceutical research are possibilities.” – Colette Young, Team Venus ’13

In her words:

I started my University of the Pacific journey as a pre-pharmacy student in the beginning of August 2010. I took genetics and organic chemistry, and learned a lot about how life science works.

At that time, I intended to quickly graduate and go to pharmacy professional school. However, near the beginning of my junior year, I took COMP 051 (Introduction to Computer Science) and developed an interest in computer science. I learned how to create programs that dealt with managing data and developed a better understanding of how computers work.

In addition, what especially intrigued me about computer science was the creativity and flexibility with what a person could design. It was challenging, and if my classmates and I had to create an application different from other software, we would have to think outside the box and develop our own code. The answers could not always be found online and that challenge drove me to work harder and create something unique. It was at that time that I decided to study more computer science and add a minor.

A lot of people wonder why I'm studying computer science, a seemingly completely different subject from biology. I answer them by saying that even though I'm more concentrated in biochemistry, I hope to somehow implement computer skills into the work I do - bioinformatics and pharmaceutical research are possibilities. I mainly hope to work in the health field, because I believe that I would perform best in that expertise. But thanks to computer science, I'm now relatively familiar with C++, JavaFX, and HTML. These may come useful should I decide to become a pharmacist IT or programmer.

Last year, when I heard about the supercomputing competition, I was eager to join. At that time, I did not know much about cloud computing and jumped at the opportunity to understand more about Linux. What interested me most was the coding and graphics behind the simulation. Because I'm a science major, I understand some of the quantum physics behind NEMO5, the tool that simulates nano electronics. Hence, during the competition I hope to use my scientific knowledge to better understand the simulations. 

I have made good friends in Team Venus, and I hope that my experience in Denver will open up many more options in my career.

Return to Team Venus story.