Eli Waxman '20

Research assistant for University of Portland Biology department 

photo of Eli Waxman“I applied to be a biology research assistant because I wanted to get out of my comfort zone and gain experience in this field of work. There’s something special about being in a “real life” lab scenario for the first time, especially as a student. During my research day, I do a variety of different tasks to help my biology professor. The tasks range from identifying and counting white blood cells in mice, nematodes, or insects to analyzing the organic matter of a soil sample.

I’ve learned so much from being a research assistant. I finally have a strong comprehension of the importance of the scientific method and the attention to consistency that is required during data collection. I’ve also learned all the cool techniques that you can only learn from lab experience. This internship has also allowed me to challenge myself as well as be open to new opportunities.

I believe there are many reasons why internships are important for undergraduate students, but ultimately, the experience is by far the greatest benefit. Internships prepare you for future job endeavors, may create other opportunities for you down the road, and helps build your character. My ultimate goal in the future is to go to Mars. By having this research internship, I am developing a strong background in research to give myself a chance against other candidates.”


University of Portland
5000 N. Willamette Blvd.,
Portland, Oregon 97203-5798