Michael Little

Why I Chose The College of Science and Mathematics

I’m Michael Little and I am majoring in Chemistry at Montclair State University.

I chose Montclair State because I wanted to get my degree from a school that would prepare me for my next step in my academic career through small classes, well equipped labs and dedicated faculty.  I’m from Middlesex, New Jersey, so by choosing Montclair State I’m also incurring minimal debt by taking advantage of in-state tuition rates.

I’m currently a Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation, or LSAMP, scholar. LSAMP is an NSF funded program aimed at increasing the quality and quantity of students successfully completing science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) degrees.  I was selected as a participant in the College of Science and Mathematics’ SHIP, the Science Honors Innovation Program where student participants are assigned a faculty mentor and receive a scholarship, summer stipend and financial support for research, and travel to conferences and workshops.

I had originally planned to go to pharmacy school after graduation, but my participation in one of chemistry and biochemistry professor Nina Goodey’s research projects spurred my interest in pursuing a PH.D. in Biochemistry and becoming a research scientist. This choice was solidified when I participated in Rutgers University’s summer RISE – or Research in Science and Engineering – program.

Right now, I am working with Dr. Goodey on research focused on understanding the complex structure and function of enzymes. Using pharmaceutically relevant dihydrofolate reductase  -- or DFHR -- enzymes as a test case, we are attempting to validate a new predictive method developed in Dr. Goodey’s lab that could have applications in drug development.

I hope to eventually pursue an upper-level management career in the pharmaceutical industry.

While it’s important that the University is always making advancements, for me, the best part of my Montclair State education is the fact that my professors are accessible and that I can easily communicate with them.

I am proud to be a Red Hawk.