My name is Barat Venkataramany, and I am the Vice-Chair and Webmaster of URN. I am a third-year student majoring in biochemistry and minoring in psychology.
I joined URN in my second year to promote undergraduate involvement in research at UVA. Additionally, research is important to a well-rounded education in any field, science and the humanities alike. Research, in my opinion, is the single-biggest aid for one to gain knowledge about a subject. Serving on the Tech and Advising Committee allowed me to pursue my interests in both facets of the committee, namely working to improve the URN website and raise awareness for UNLEASH.
Outside of URN, I work in the Minor Lab in the School of Medicine, having started during my first semester at UVA. My research is focused on studying the interactions of mammalian serum albumins (SA) with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and hormones. Using funding from the Harrison Undergraduate Research Award, I have been able to co-author two deposits in the Protein Data Bank and begin writing a manuscript on albumin-testosterone binding with other members of the lab. Previously, I worked in the Mooers Lab at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, which allowed me to pursue an initial interest in crystallography and computational methodology.
As Vice-Chair, I hope to strengthen URN’s relationship with the “hard” sciences, social sciences, and humanities departments in the undergraduate schools at UVA. I also want to work to diversify URN’s officer pool. Furthermore, I aim to build a relationship between URN and UVA’s Vice-President for Research.
I am also an active member of First Year Players as a violinist, having performed in The Addams Family and Pippin. Additionally, I am involved in Asha for Education as the External President and Kinetic Sound as a member of the Programming Board. Outside all of this, in my little spare time, I like to read, support my Cleveland sports teams, listen to music, and contemplate the questions of our universe (mostly through chemistry).