Humans of UCSF: Finding Meaning

Columnist
School of Dentistry

“Finishing my summer dental research project feels so good! While I am the editor-in-chief for the dental research newsletter and have years of research experience under my belt, I still don’t feel like a confident researcher. But I enjoyed being challenged and having to try and try again until I found the way. People that stop by our posters are getting a fraction of the story behind our summers. A mentor in our field passed away in front of us. We deal with sick family members, mentally or physically. There is life and death, intense joy and pain behind the work we do. Science is cold and objective, as it should be, but people are messy, nuanced and complicated. Doing research allows me to feel like I’m contributing to a human endeavor that will continue long after I’m gone. At the nexus of the science and the human, I find the meaning for the research I’ve done.”

Morgan Nelson

School of Dentistry, 2nd Year Student