The summer of his junior year, Bobby Michaud ’14 earned a scholarship from the Maine Space Grant Consortium, a nonprofit that funds research of interest to NASA. His research concerned the relationship between humans, animals and bacteria. “Bacteria will always be a part of our lives and will always be important to us,” he said, noting, “58 to 61 percent of all human pathogens are zoonomic, or derived from animals.” His work may be important to NASA’s efforts to use animals in biodome habitation and space colonization. Following graduation, Bobby enrolled in Tufts Medical School.
Why did you choose to double major?
I am very interested in the relationship between psychology and biology. Both fields are unique, but are also closely related. I am interested in the brain and I want to perform research on the brain in the future. This involves having an understanding of not only biology but also psychology. I also felt that having the two majors would give me an advantage when applying to graduate programs.
What has your experience been like with the psychology faculty?
The psychology faculty is amazing! They all really care about their students, and I am so happy I have had the opportunity to participate in this program. I have taken many psychology courses and the department never fails to keep me interested in each one. One class that I remember taking that was of particular interest to me was evolutionary psychology with Dr. Joshua Schoenfeld. In this class, we looked at how evolution can be used to understand psychology. As a biology and psychology major, this class worked for me because it involved both fields. The psychology professors are all very invested in their teachings and are all great teachers. The department is always listening to the students and continuously trying to improve. The advisors are knowledgeable and always willing to help their students. The entire psychology department puts a lot of effort in listening to the students.
What’s been your favorite psychology class you’ve taken?
My favorite psychology class was clinical psychology, which Dr. Joshua Schoenfeld taught. Clinical psychology taught me to look at the world in a new way. Psychology is a great science, and this class has given me many tools that I use to evaluate the world.
Has the psychology program prepared you for your future career goal?
Yes. The professors are always willing to talk about future plans. Dr. Eduljee, who teaches senior seminar, readies psychology seniors for their future by helping them prepare their résumé for graduate school and their first job. I had a mediocre résumé before, but now that I have been working with Dr. Eduljee I have a great résumé. Dr. Eduljee and the psychology department have all helped me prepare for my future and pushed me toward my career goals.