July 30, 2012
Writer: Brenda Pincock

My name is Jonathan Fitzgerald, and I am a BYU-Idaho chemistry alumnus. I didn't know much about the field of chemistry until after my mission. When I realized how closely they resembled magnetic Legos and Play-Doh, I was hooked!

My favorite part of chemistry is seeing how different molecules are made and used by the human body. This was reaffirmed when I chose to do my undergraduate internship studying genetics and biochemistry at the Max Planck Institute for Biochemistry in Munich, Germany.

After graduating in April 2011, I continued in the field of biochemistry. During the following summer, I did an internship at Harvard Medical School/MIT studying nanoparticles and drug delivery systems.

Following the internship, I accepted a position in Boston as a full-time research technician at the Center for Experimental Therapeutics and Reperfusion Injury at Harvard Medical School. A large part of my position is running LC-MS analysis on samples from collaborators around the world. My two current projects are in partnership with NIH and Karolinska Institute (Sweden). This autumn, I will be applying to graduate schools.

If asked for advice to younger students, I would encourage them to find research experience opportunities that they love and to find passion in discovering new things. Networking with alumni and spending a lot of time searching for your internship will help with this pursuit.

I really enjoy staying connected to the BYU-Idaho Chemistry Department, working on the Society/Alumni Facebook group, and helping students finding internships/jobs. I like to hear from current students, so feel free to contact me.

(Jon can be found on Facebook by visiting our Chemistry Society/Alumni group)