This summer, I was lucky enough to return for a second year to Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Regeneron), where I am working in the business operations department of the Regeneron Genetics Center (RGC) at the company’s Tarrytown, New York headquarters. The RGC is working to pair the sequenced exomes from thousands of individuals worldwide to the respective de-identified phenotype data to help determine the genetic factors that cause various human diseases. As part of my projects this summer, I am developing a tool that summarizes the current collaborations that the RGC has with other universities and institutions around the world. I will also be working with RGC to enter into new collaborations to continue to build a database for genetic research.

I am also very excited to work for a company that is committed to making sustainability a priority and a reality in the workplace. Regeneron published a sustainability report in 2016 outlining their successes thus far and their goals for the next several years. Two of the buildings on the campus have achieved LEED Gold status, and the company hopes that renovations will meet at least LEED Silver specifications when possible. There is currently one functioning net-zero parking garage (where I park every day!) with solar panels on its roof, and the company is working to receive certification for future net-zero garages. Additionally, on a smaller scale, there are numerous recycling bins dispersed throughout the campus, which I see employees striving to actively use when possible. Regeneron also has a battery recycling program in place, for which there is ample informative signage around the buildings to encourage people to participate. In general, Regeneron is striving to use alternative energy sources and to foster increased employee engagement in sustainable practices around the company.

Aside from work, I am trying to spend as much time outside as possible, to enjoy the warm weather and get some fresh air. I vacationed in Cape Cod with my family for a week in July, where I watched sunsets (and some early morning sunrises) on the beach, rode bikes through the woods, and kayaked and paddle-boarded in the bay. I also visited the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx, and saw the beautiful Chihuly exhibit integrated with the flowers and exotic plants. These experiences every year help me appreciate the environment in which we live and how we must work hard to protect it for future generations to enjoy as well. I’m excited to serve as this year’s EAF Student Coordinator and to work on several incredible projects with the rest of the EAF team!

Caitlin’s post is the first in EAF’s summer blog series introducing the EAF 2017-18 members.