Harpal Singh, Bioengineering
Cancer Scholar, 2017 Cohort

Where are you working now?

I am a senior about to graduate this May. Following graduation, I will be working in a Biologics rotational program with the company Catalent Pharma.

What are you currently researching?

I am still involved with the Dar Noise Biology Lab. We recently had 2 publications in PNAS and iScience where I was an author. In our lab we are exploring how fluctuations in a gene’s expression (called noise) can drive a population of cells towards different behaviors (in the case of HIV, reemergence of infection or dormancy). More details here. 

How did your experience as a student in a CCIL training program help you achieve your career goals?

When I was a freshmen, Cancer Scholars was really important to me because it helped me form connections with students who have similar ambitions and drive to research. Furthermore, Dr. Karin Jensen and Dr. Marcia Pool were instrumental in the role they played in getting me interested and involved in research.

When you graduate, what will you miss most about the University of Illinois?

I will miss walking down around all of the quads our university has, especially the Bardeen quad. I will miss speaking to my professors Dr. Jensen and Dr. Pool during our classes together for cancer scholars

What advice would you give to students in CCIL programs now, or those applying?

I would advise them to explore all kinds of research before you choose to move forward with a lab, and its okay if you need to switch labs or research topics. People change, and the research you do should fascinate you if it will be your career.

— Compiled by the CCIL Communications Team