NORIKA REHM, Undergraduate
JS: Okay, let’s warm up with something easy. Tell me about a plant that played a significant role in your life.
NR: My mom has a leafy green plant that she has had longer than I have been alive. It has moved everywhere we have and when my mom is away it is my responsibility to make sure the plant doesn’t wither away. Also, every 7 years, there is a single white flower that blooms for about 24 hours. It’s very exciting.
JS: Whoah! Cool! And how do you like Vancouver? Where did you live before coming to Vancouver? Vancouver’s better, right? KIDDING! There are no wrong answers here! Please, go ahead.
NR: I was born in Calgary but have lived in Vancouver since I was 5. Vancouver is pretty cool. I used to be blasé about living here but I find the more I travel, the more I realize that the climate and the activities here are pretty awesome.
JS: Classic fun interview question: What’s your worst feature?
NR: I am a super big klutz ESPECIALLY when I am nervous. I seem to lose all awareness of where my limbs are in space and will trip over thin air, knock things off of counters, and bump into anyone who is in the near vicinity.
JS: Okay then I guess we’ll try to keep your nerves calm when doing experiments! Speaking of, tell me about your first experiment. Not from your first lab experience, school etc, but your REAL FIRST experiment.
NR: I used to grab all of the ingredients I could find from the kitchen cupboards and fridge and mix them all together in a bowl. Then I would place the bowl of gross into the freezer and would wait to see what would happen. Without fail, every time, the mixture would freeze (surprising I know) and my mother would be super unimpressed. At least I was systematic in my testing and came to the same conclusion each time.
JS: Seems that at an early age you learned the importance of repeating and replicating experiments before coming to solid conclusions! What are you up to when you’re not in the lab? WHAT? YOU’RE NOT ALWAYS IN THE LAB? Just kidding, do tell!
NR: I like to go for long runs, lift heavy weights, and nap as often as I can. When time and money permits I also love to travel.
JS: Sometimes we have to move heavy equipment around the lab so now that I know that’s your thing… Classic interview question #2, really sorry: If you were stuck on a deserted island and you had to choose one type of animal that would invade the island and completely overpopulate it and be around you day in and day out until your life’s end, what would that animal be?
NR: Horses. NOT ponies (ponies are evil) but horses.
JS: If you were to come into the lab one morning (it’s ok to leave the lab to sleep at night, sometimes) and find that someone had brought in your favourite edible treat to share with the lab, what would that favourite edible treat be?
NR: Oh man. Food is my favorite thing ever so this is difficult. I think if someone were being extra nice they would bring in a large thin crust cheese pizza for starters and then a huge batch of chocolate-covered English toffee for dessert. And maybe some pecan pie (for second dessert).
JS: I’d disqualify you for giving 3 answers instead of 1, but I really like your plant story.