Where are you from? What was your undergraduate degree and from which university?
I’m from the southern China. My hometown is two-hour driving distance from Shanghai. I got my bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Tianjin University, which is very close to Beijing.
Why did you choose the University of Illinois and the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department?
The engineering department of UIUC is highly competitive and has an excellent reputation in China. In addition, the faculty members are so sweet that they even organized the welcome reception in China for the incoming Chinese students.
Tell us about your research interests. What lab do you work in and what is your role in the lab?
I am currently working with Prof. Shukla. My research interests are understanding the mechanism of nitrate transport through membrane transporters in plants and root-associated bacteria using large-scale molecular dynamics simulations. The goal is increasing crop yield to cope with increasing global food demand while maintaining environmental quality.
What are your plans after you receive your Ph.D.?
After my graduation, I would like to find a job in the high-tech companies. I haven’t decided the specific direction as of now. But I think creating advanced technologies for the benefit of society is very cool.
What’s your favorite thing to do around campus or in Champaign-Urbana?
I really like the Chinese restaurants here such as Golden Harbor and Rainbow Garden. Japan house is also an awesome place for learning the tea culture in Asia.