Episode 11: Pass/Fail


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5.301 wraps up. Find out who makes the cut, and what the students are up to three months later.

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ANTHONY: The history of 5.301, right here.


IKE: It's over. And I miss it already.

NARRATOR: It's the last day of 5.301. Next week, everybody will turn in their lab reports. And the week after that, they'll all pass the class.

IKE: I came with no lab experience. This is my first ever lab.

ETHAN: I didn't have any research experience coming here at MIT, at least in the sciences.

LINA: In the beginning, I understood nothing.

IKE: I learned a lot. I actually knew the whole theoretical part of it. But I was always interested in getting to know this part too.

LEALIA: And I learned a lot about chem lab techniques.

IKE: I got a hang of it. Starting, I was really bad. You could asK Phil or anyone.

LINA: As I've progressed in this class, I think I've gotten a lot better.

NARRATOR: It's been a journey for everyone. But it's not all about the science.

LINA: The best thing about 5.301 was getting to meet the people. It was really, really fun.

ETHAN: It was a lot of fun.

DAN: I had a ton of fun in lab, meeting everyone, making friends.

ETHAN: We really bonded a lot in those three weeks.

LEALIA: I'm going to miss the class and the atmosphere.

HANSOL: Everybody's talking to each other. And we're all getting to know each other. And we're all loud.

ETHAN: The spirit of 5.301 will live on.

NARRATOR: The chemistry department is getting a few more majors this year.

DAN: Taking this lab class especially strengthened my desire to pursue chemistry.

ANTHONY: I actually switched my major from chemical engineering to chemistry. I think it was the right choice for me. After 5.301, I realized that I really did like being in lab. I do have a strong passion for chemistry in that I could do it for the rest of my life.

NARRATOR: Hansol doesn't know it yet. But she'll declare chemistry as well.

At the end of the day, Dr. Dolhun meets with every student individually to say good bye and help them find a UROP lab.

EMILY: He just wanted to say that he enjoyed having us and asked us what our plans were for our majors and stuff like that.

ANTHONY: I just talked to him about how the class was, what I was thinking about doing. And he was letting me know that he'll be here to help us, read our drafts of emails to professors and stuff.

NARRATOR: And just a few weeks later, Emily, Hansol, and Ike all have UROPs.

EMILY: The research that I'm doing in the Essigmann lab is we are looking at some chlorouracil derivatives. And we're putting these lesions inside DNA. And we're testing it to see if it causes any mutations. And this can lead to diabetes and cancer. We're studying this just to locate exactly what each lesions do and how they affect the body.

HANSOL: Hi, I'm in lab. The whole purpose of what I'm doing is to figure out how fast we can make peptide Fmoc chemistry. And right now, I'm currently designing an experiment to take a peptide at room temperature and compare it with how it couples under a microwave at 60 degrees, which is the optimal temperature.

IKE: I got a UROP. Yeah, so they delivered on their promise. It's working with metal organic frameworks, or MOFs, which are really well structured organic molecules.

The most important thing was 5.301. I took that. It was like, all right, this guy is prepared, you know?

See ya.

I'm out. I'm out. Monday, I wake up at 2:00 PM, yeah.

NARRATOR: 5.301 was tough. But Anthony, Lina, Ike, Emily and the others met the challenge.

IKE: Don't feel intimidated. You're still here, right? You still made it.

Make the best of what you have. You're just like everyone else. You're as smart as everyone else. That's why you're here.

You're here for a purpose. So do your thing, study hard, and you'll pass. I won't guarantee an A though. But you'll pass.

PHIL: Oh no, don't film this.