"The description of the program was intriguing. I had no idea what the bioeconomy was and yet the description of it sounded exactly like the type of work that I find interesting." A curiousity about the emerging bioeconomy led Leyla Battista to CABLE. Now, Leyla opens up about her experience with the program so far and how CABLE is helping her connect to her career goals.
Q: What university are you attending and what are you studying?
Leyla: Auburn University. Senior in Biosystems Engineering.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Just to name a few, I love cooking, crafts, mountain biking, running, yoga, pilates, rock climbing, and hiking. I love being outside and being active. I can’t stand to sit idle so I enjoy anything that has me working with my hands or moving about.
What attracted you to CABLE and what do you hope to gain from your experience?
The description of the program was intriguing. I had no idea what the bioeconomy was and yet the description of it sounded exactly like the type of work that I find interesting. I hoped to learn more about the bioeconomy and add to my overall knowledge. Prior to the program, I was unsure of what I would do after graduation. CABLE has helped me focus on a specific area and identify the best path by which to get there.
What are your career aspirations?
I would like to go to graduate school after my undergraduate studies. After graduate school, I would like to work in the energy or agriculture sectors and possibly work in government.
How will CABLE help you in achieving your professional goals?
The program has been extremely motivating for me. Witnessing the current bioeconomy, understanding its goals, and seeing its leaders has helped me identify my own goals and professional path.
What Working Group are you in and how do you see that connecting to your goals?
I am in the Public Policy Working Group. Prior to CABLE, I really had given little to no thought to the role of policy in the fields of science and engineering. If anything, I thought technical progress was made completely independent of public policy. However, this is far from the truth. Without encouraging policies, progress can be hindered or even made impossible. As I have come to see close relationship between policy and scientific progress, I have been inspired to explore professional opportunities that would blend science and public policy.
You had the unique opportunity of attending ABLC Next, a conference dedicated to the most important issues in the bioeconomy, with CABLE in San Francisco. How would you describe your experience at the conference?
It was an incredible experience. I got to meet such inspirational bioeconomy leaders and talk with many about their companies. The experience helped me identify the various areas of the bioeconomy and how best I can fit into it.