During normal operations, why would people normally call you over the beam-phone?
As a postdoc, a big part of my job is to learn how to run a beamline. Most of the time when I hear my name over the pager, it is Chris (Pollock, my supervisor) calling me down to the PIPOXS beamline. I typically spend time there helping set up for users and trying to improve the beamline. When we have PREM visitors, I spend a lot of time with them, helping them set up their experiments and answering any question they may have.
For you, what is the hardest part about working remotely? Most enjoyable part?
I miss my coworkers! The postdoc office is usually a very social place. We all work on very different projects, but often update each other on our progress. I have learned so much from those spontaneous discussions.
I guess the most enjoyable part is that my home office has a window, that and there are very few distractions here, so I can really focus on my projects.
Do you have any tips (life hacks) that you would like to share about working from home?
I try to take breaks away from screens. If the weather is nice enough, I go for a walk during lunch. When I am done working, I try to take a least an hour away from technology. Most days, that means I am going for a run. Having regular, scheduled workouts helps me keep track of what day it is. We are so lucky to have so many beautiful trails in Ithaca! It allows me to clear my head and stay active without running into any other humans. And that brings me to the next question…
What hobby or project are you currently pursuing?
I am signed up for my first 50-mile endurance run this summer!! It hasn’t been canceled yet, so it’s been a huge motivation for me to stay active and get outside every day! I end up spending most of my Saturdays running around, exploring different sections of the Finger Lakes Trail. Something that has been on my must-do-list for quite awhile.
How does the science at CHESS continue?
I was lucky enough to have beam time in February, before we had to shut down. We managed to run 2 complete sets of experiments, which means I now have a lot of data to process and analyze. I have several months of work ahead of me. In addition to this, I have been working on a computational chemistry project. Since I can currently dedicate 100% of my time to my own projects, I’m hoping to make a lot of progress.