Julie Lander.Hometown: Dallas, Texas
Undergraduate Institution: Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah

As an undergraduate student I had the opportunity to take several classes that taught basic Biological principles by discussing the experiments that led to those discoveries. I soon found myself thinking of my own follow-up experiments and realized that I wanted a career where I could ask questions no one had asked before and find answers to new problems. I knew that research needed to be a part of my future.

I didn’t know much about Cincinnati when I applied for the graduate program here. I knew they had a children’s hospital with an excellent reputation, and that there were some investigators whose research looked interesting. Furthermore, I was interested in studying developmental biology and the MDB program seemed to have a lot to offer. Now that I've been here for a few years, I've realized what a great opportunity it has been. I have the opportunity to do exciting research on diseases that affect real peoples’ lives. I am currently studying a gene that has been shown to be an important factor in diseases such as atopic dermatitis and asthma in humans. A great deal of the research that goes on at Cincinnati Children’s is translational; people here are studying basic science with patients in mind.

I have also continually been impressed with the amazing atmosphere of collegiality here. Faculty, postdocs, technicians, and fellow students are always willing to offer help whenever it is needed. The MDB program at Cincinnati Children’s functions more as a family than a group of competitors; there is an excellent cohort of people that want to see each other succeed.