On a New Mission

Kyle Minder '19 | Biochemistry

"When I was getting ready to exit the army, I knew I wanted to go to a very reputable university," recalls Kyle Minder '19. "The recurrent theme I kept seeing through my research was the University of Michigan. Its campuses produce good scientists, produce good doctors, and produce good professionals. I also wanted a university that is commuter-friendly and older-student-friendly. I came here and that's exactly what I found."

Kyle also found close working relationships with biochemistry classmates and professors through his involvement in research projects spearheaded by faculty members like assistant professor Justin Massing, PhD.

"The entire chemistry department faculty are professional, helpful, and just good people," said Kyle. "They all have such a passion for what they do, and share that enjoyment with the students by getting them involved."

In 2018, Massing received funding from the Bryer Foundation Medical Research Fund, established by the family of Flint native Ben F. Bryer to support the medical research endeavors of UM-Flint faculty. That allowed him to bring Kyle and fellow student Joseph Lang on as collaborators investigating Flourine 19F NMR probes.

"What these probes allow us to do is detect formaldehyde concentrations indirectly," said Kyle. "If we can create these probes to measure the concentration of waste products, we can find insights into hypoxic (oxygen-deprived) areas like tumor cells."

Kyle was part of the team that presented findings related to this research at the American Chemical Society's national conference.