My name is Yoonji Choe and I just completed my sophomore year at Wellesley College where I am a physics major and economics minor. I grew up here on Long Island and went to Great Neck South High School.

Apart from physics, I am also an active member of the mock trial team where I have learned invaluable speech and presentation skills. I am also the treasurer of a hip hop dance group, Wellesley College Freestyle. My other hobbies include golf, figure skating and cello.

I first became interested in physics during my junior year of high school when I took the AP physics mechanics course. I found that I really understood the principles of physics and my teacher at the time really made the course enjoyable. When I started my freshman year at Wellesley College I expected that I would wind up on a path to a different major, but nothing seemed to interest me as much as physics does and, needless to say, I stayed a physics major. Besides the regular physics curriculum, I have taken an introduction to engineering course and a nuclear science course, both of which I found extremely interesting.

I became interested in optics during my Introduction to Quantum Mechanics lab course. In lab, we worked a lot with spectroscopy and even made our own spectrometers. We then used those spectrometers to do other interesting optics-based labs such as making our very own home made dye lasers using Rhodamine 610 as our dye. This coming year I will be taking another Quantum Mechanics course as well as Advanced Physics Lab.

My desire to get more hands on research experience led me to apply to summer research programs which is what led me to this REU program. Hopefully the experience and knowledge that I gain with lasers and optics at the Laser Teaching Center will lead me to exciting new things in the future.