Hayley Milner’s Research Lab Assistant Experience

hayley pic1Name: Hayley Milner

Major/Minor: Environmental Science / Business Administration

Graduation Year: 2014

Hometown: Waltham, MA


AC: How did you collaborate with Professor Dan McNally, and eventually have the opportunity to become a lab research assistant?

HM:  Dan was my mentor for my science 490 course. This course allowed me to experience hands on lab work on a weekly basis. Because I enjoyed the course so much, I knew I wanted to work in Professor McNallys lab for the rest of my time at Bryant!

AC:   Can you explain what you are researching?

HM: We are currently researching metal and organic content within in tar and ash from wood pellet stoves. We are looking to see if there could be possible harmful PAH’s within these samples.


AC:  One of the most important resources a leader can have in today’s business world is “support”.  How can the Bryant community support you in your research?

HM: The Bryant Science Department is incredibly helpful to their students. The faculty and staff provide numerous resources and helpful tips when conducting research as well as working in the lab. Before working in any lab Bryant staff trains and teaches the students how to properly work in the lab and handle the scientific instruments.


AC:  What is your favorite aspect of this research?  What is most challenging?

HM: My favorite part of working in the lab is being able to discover the results of projects we work on during the semester and then analyzing the results to see if they were what we expected to find or they could end up being something completely different. The most challenging part of research is if an unexpected error occurs during an experiment in which case the experiment would have to be re-conducted.


AC:  What, at Bryant, has prepared you the most for this research?

HM: Most of my required science courses helped prepare me to work in the labs including biology, chemistry, and physics. Also the mentors that work with you during your lab research are always there to help you along the way.


AC:  Any advice for students in your major?

HM: I would recommend to start working in a lab as soon as possible. It is an excellent opportunity to gain this type of experience as well as giving you the ability to explore different areas of scientific research.


AC:  Lastly, where do you see yourself in five years?

HM: In five years, I hope to be either continuing my schooling with graduate school in environmental science or working for an environmental consulting business that works with ecological or coastal restoration!


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