Kun Lin was a PhD candidate in his 3rd year of our graduate program. Kun was doing his doctoral thesis research in the laboratory of Dr. Gary Bassell. Prior to coming to Emory, Kun completed a B.S. degree at Purdue University in three years (GPA, 3.96), majoring in Neurobiology and Physiology. In recognition of his academic scholarship, Kun was recruited to our program with the Laney Scholar Award.
Kun died in a tragic accident on the lunar new-year on February 12, 2021. Kun was a special person whose life impacted many of his fellow students and faculty colleagues. He was full of radiant energy, intellect, passion and humor. He was a kind, caring and generous person. He loved the natural world. His dream was to become a professor. He would have had a promising career, likely to make many discoveries that would advance biomedical research. He will be deeply missed but never forgotten.
We would like to share this excerpt from Kun Lin’s personal statement as part of the application to our PhD program.
“My fascination with the nervous system started with my childhood pastime of observing little creatures by a river near my house; or rather, the frustration that they would hide away once I uncovered them. In order to go one step further from my childhood fascination and to get a perspective from the clinical side on what effects the nervous system damage and perturbation have on the patient, I have spent some time following a neurologist during his rounds. From this experience, I developed interest in the processes and plasticity of the nervous system that give rise to the dynamism of the nervous system. Having seen how these conditions can sometimes severely impact patients’ life qualities, I want to gain substantial knowledge in the field through graduate training to be able to start addressing these fascinating and pressing questions."
“I want to become an enthusiastic instructor for students, as my instructors have been for me, in addition to becoming a first-rate researcher. Through the training to become a better researcher and a better teacher, I want to ultimately take on an academic position at a research university to conduct research to further our understanding of the nervous system, and to teach students at different levels to inspire them to become excited to learn more about the nervous system, in the classroom, and beyond.”
His memory lives on through your contribution to support the Neuroscience graduate program, in memory of Kun Lin.