In the last week I transitioned onto a new project: the 3D printing of gelatin-based hydrogels. So far, I’ve learned how to create the liquid solution and mold it, as well as test out various formulations of it. This week I will begin to learn how to 3D print the gel!

Every day I go to lunch at the dining hall with other members of Dr. Park’s group. Today, the people on my new sub-team invited me to their weekly pizza lunch, where they give updates and establish agendas.


Dr. Moser’s weekly workshops impress the fact that scientists and engineers must be effective communicators to maximize the impact of their work. We have Zoom meetings where he teaches us communications skills applicable to academics, the workplace, and everyday life. It is great to have him taking the time to help us increase our ability to make a difference in the real world.


This weekend, the other scholars came down to Daejeon to meet Matt and I! On Saturday, we adventured around the city, going to the Sungsimdang (성심당) bakery, the National Science Museum (which has the KSLV-1 orbital rocket!), the Hanbat Arboretum (한밭수목원), and at last a Korean BBQ place for dinner.

The KSLV-1 rocket!

The capstone of the week came Sunday. I planned a hike for us in Gyeryongsan National Park (계룡산국립공원). It was stunning, one of the best hikes I’ve undertaken! We hit both the Sambulbong (삼불봉) and Gwaneumbong (관음봉) peaks as we hiked along the ridge. The steep ascent and descent really taxed our energy, but the views at the mountaintops (and from the lush forest the whole way too) were well worth it. At times, I worried I overwhelmed the other scholars with the trail choice, due to the sheer height and distance, but we all made it out alive and well. It was a joy to see how others enjoyed it. How could something so exhausting be so refreshing!

A view from Sambulbong Peak!

Gator chomp on the top of Gwaneumbong Peak!