Sree Kavya Penneru is a final year student of the Integrated Master of Science program in Systems Biology at the University of Hyderabad (UoH) is selected for pursuing Ph.D. at University of Tennessee, USA. Ms. Kavya is currently doing her Master’s project on Molecular Dynamic Simulations of a protein – Cellobiohydrolase, which is involved in biofuel production in the Department of Systems and Computational Biology under the guidance of Dr. Moumita Saharay.
Kavya Penneru gained research experience by working in few laboratories at the University of Hyderabad. Due to her interest in the area of Biophysics, she joined research labs in the Physics department along with the departments in the School of Life Sciences. She worked on the characterization of plants using terahertz radiation at the Advanced Center of Research in High Energy Materials, UoH, where she learnt various spectroscopy techniques and gained experience in computational and wet lab experiments from her life science department. Kavya was selected for a scholarship from the Khorana program in the summer of 2020, an Indo-US program to provide Indian students research experience at US Universities, sponsored by DBT, IUSSTF and Winstep-Forward. Due to the outbreak of Covid-19, she was not able to go to the United States. She used her time to explore online resources and apply for graduate programs to pursue her dreams.
Kavya is selected for a graduate program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, USA. It is a fully funded five year PhD program at the Biochemistry and Cellular and Molecular Biology Department. She will be joining three labs for her first-year lab rotations and then will choose a project to work on for the next four years. She is looking forward to work on many more proteins and diving deep into atomic-level interactions of biological systems leading to their functions. She would be joining the program in fall 2021.
Kavya says that the time she had during the pandemic gave her a golden opportunity to attend many online talks and international conferences. It has given her a chance to learn more about the fields she was interested in researching on. She is thankful to all her professors and people around her for being there by her side and encouraging her to pursue her dream.