#PROFspective: Chemistry Major Conducting COVID Research, Phillip Lakernick

Phillip standing outside.

Today we feature senior Phillip Lakernick, a double major in Chemistry and Computing and Informatics from Cherry Hill, NJ (Camden County).

What opportunities has Rowan been able to give you?

I have been doing research this semester with COVID and researching drugs that’ll help out in some way. It is all electronic for me, I am doing all of the electronic ones. The other ones are hands-on. I have been studying certain drugs like Hesperidin, a series of drugs. I have been putting it in to the computer to see if it works with different proteins in the COVID cell.

Phillip getting a beaker off a shelf.

What are some interesting things you have learned in your major?

I have learned that organic chemistry is harder than it seems. When I first did chemistry I was like “yeah this stuff is easy.” Then I took organic chemistry then I was like “man this stuff is hard.” With coding, I have learned coding languages are very different from one another. A lot of them have similarities to them but there is always that one specific detail that makes them different from the rest. I have learned a lot of different programming languages at Rowan.

Phillip standing outside.

What is your favorite class?

My favorite class was probably Intro to Web Development. So far what I have done with that class is program websites and make them myself. I also get to do whatever I want with them and it has actually been a lot of fun. I have also learned you can mix Java coding to it and make even more stuff happen so it is not just programming in HTML.

Phillip in a lab.

How have professors or staff contributed to your time at Rowan?

My professor for Computing and Informatics and Intro to Object Oriented Programming really helped me out. When I first came to Rowan I did not really do that well. She pointed me in the right direction of what I should do instead of my major at the time. Then when I took chemistry that helped me figure out what I wanted to do which was chemistry and computing and informatics.

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Story and photography by:  Stephanie Batista, sophomore Music Industry major

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