Who is a leader that you admire?
The French-Polish scientist, Marie Curie. I admire her perseverance, brilliance, and love for her family. Her accomplishments are just ridiculous: she pioneered the study of radioactivity (she coined the term), she discovered two radioactive elements (polonium and radium), she was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, the only scientist in history to win the Nobel Prize in two different sciences (chemistry and physics), and she was the first female professor at the University of Paris. Whoa.
How do you think YPK contributes to our community?
From what I hear from people attending YPK events, a lot of members are looking to make new friends. Many members are new here, or are returning after an absence, and they are looking for a group of people to do exciting things with and to get involved with the community. YPK is that conduit that helps get people together and get them involved in social and community centered events around Knoxville.
What has been your favorite experience with YPK?
Oh, that's tough. My favorite memory of a social event with YPK is probably the community ride that we did at TurboSpin Cycling Studio followed by trivia at The Casual Pint. You make great friends when you mix exercise and beer! My favorite professional development event has got to be the tour of Alcoa based aluminum supplier plant, Arconic. It was a fascinating tour of a place that I always passed by, but never thought I'd see in detail.
How has YPK impacted you?
YPK does so much to help connect individuals who may not have had an opportunity to meet otherwise. I work in Oak Ridge, and it is not easy to meet fellow young professionals in Knoxville. YPK has introduced me to a vast network of interesting, driven, caring people. Honestly, most of my friends and social life stem from YPK! Now that I'm the Membership Co-Chair, I've had the opportunity to reach out to businesses to ask if they'd be interested in hosting us for an event and then plan that event together. It's exciting to collaborate and make these connections. I'm a scientist, so that opportunity pretty much never happens for me in my professional world. Being involved this way has definitely helped my professional development.
What are you currently reading, watching, and listening to?
Reading: We Are Legion (We Are Bob). If you love science fiction or if are looking for a series to jump in to, try this book (also available on audiobook). It's about a guy who dies accidentally in our time and comes back to life in the future as a sentient computer controlling a probe that is sent out into space to find habitable planets for human beings to live on. Freaking impossible to put down.
Watching: I've been watching a lot of the BBC's series Walking With Dinosaurs and re-runs of Bob's Burgers! On the weekends I'll catch up on Altered Carbon.
Listening to: My pump up jam right now is 'The Middle' by Zedd, Maren Morris, and Grey. I love Maren Morris! I don't think there's a song she'd done that I haven't liked (My Church, 80s Mercedes, I Could Use A Love Song...)
When you're not at work where can people find you?
The grocery store or my kitchen. I love to cook! It's one of my stress reliefs, for sure. Had a bad day at work? Mince some herbs, smash a couple cloves of garlic, you get the idea. I've been experimenting with Irish and Jewish recipes lately. Just don't ask me to bake. I'm absolutely terrible at it.