Intern Spotlight: Sophie Liu


Sophie Liu is a 17-year old at Newport High school in Bellevue, WA. She discovered SoundBio through an online search for internships after recognizing someone she knew from a blogpost about SoundBio’s iGEM team. This led Sophie to join the 2018 iGEM team, followed by a 9 month internship at the lab. She was dedicated to both endeavors, spending two hours a day on the bus during her commute from Bellevue to the U-District.

Sophie’s motivation to pursue the sciences started at a young age. She went through many different science ‘phases’: grade 1 - egyptology, grade 2 - geology, grade 3 - astronomy, grade 4th - physics/chem, grade 5th - marine science, and grade 6th - biology. It seems biology stuck! As Sophie says, “Life on a small scale is compelling because so much is not known.”

With regards to her education, Sophie believes that while grades are important, life is experiential. She is self-motivated in this quest and appreciates that SoundBio offers a variety of experiences to everyone regardless of their educational background.

SoundBio allows motivated people to explore science.
— Sophie Liu

Sophie’s delve into exploratory science was magnified while participating as a member of the iGEM team and gaining hands-on lab experience in synthetic biology. Additionally, she learned about community norms, such as how to effectively communicate her findings to a broader audience.

Sophie realizes that she is currently in the transition phase from adolescence to adulthood. She believes SoundBio has assisted her during this time by offering opportunities to engage with adults in scientific arenas. It has also given her a glimpse of what it’s like to work ‘in the real world’, and the responsibilities this entails. Her favorite memory regarding SoundBio was being given a set of keys to the lab. This was a new level of freedom and accountability for Sophie, and it played an important role in her transition towards independence.

Sophie hopes the lab can grow in size over the coming years. When asked about what SoundBio represents to her, she stated, “Potential!”. We think she’s right; the possibilities of scientific discovery are endless, and SoundBio offers a stepping stone for curious minds like Sophie to start exploring.