The Last Year of University | 5 Things I Learned

In third year, my degree really started coming into form and less about the basics.

So for the third day, I thought I’d list 5 things I learned in university. (Though I did learn more–at least I certainly hope so.)

1. Life is a network of interactions.

This is the basis of my degree. These interactions could be metabolic pathways, protein folding, or a signal/receptor. When these things get messed with, you get disease.

And that’s my degree in 3 sentences.

2. Comedy is funny because it’s true.

I got to take a literature course based on comedy in the 18th century. In it, we studied that comedic literature is funny in part because it can talk about truths we don’t usually talk about. Often this means sex and poop, but this can also mean political issues and even ridiculous social habits.

3. The mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell.

I’m not joking, this became my life in second year. Specifically, I learned how sugar (glucose) is converted into energy using pathways that occur in, surprise, surprise, the mitochondria.

4. Graphic novels are literature.

My first literature class in university was an Intro to Literature, and in it I read two graphic novels: an interpretation of Beowulf, and the first volume of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman.

I don’t usually read graphic novels, typically opting for the anime than the manga, the movie to the DC or Marvel comic.

But I can still appreciate the mode of storytelling that is the graphic novel. I’ll probably give them a try again at some point.

5. Why DNA sequencing is important.

Biology has gotten really exciting with the ability to sequence DNA. You might have heard of the Human Genome Project, where the entirety of the Human Genome was sequenced with the hope of fully understanding how the human body works.

This wasn’t the case, since we don’t all have the same DNA.

So it’s super important to sequence DNA and understand variations between people, be it harmless ones for the colour of your eye, or the dangerous ones that lead to Parkinson’s or cancer.


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