Young physicist willing to go against the flow, helps others find their way

Sunday, May 21, 2023 - 14:32 in Physics & Chemistry

This story is part of a series of graduate profiles ahead of Commencement ceremonies. When LaNell Williams first arrived at Vinothan N. Manoharan’s lab, the team was focused on how a virus forms itself into the right structure. Williams, however, took a different approach, asking instead what it would take to get a virus to form incorrectly. “What I’ve always have been impressed with by LaNell is that she takes her own direction, and it’s usually not the same direction that everybody else is going in,” said Manoharan, the Wagner Family Professor of Chemical Engineering and Professor of Physics. “That’s a trait that I think is important for anybody who’s going to be a researcher and a leader in their field. It’s only by seeing how things go wrong that we can understand how things go right. LaNell has a good sense for when you have to take a different direction from what everyone...

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