Laura Hernández started her college experience at Mira Costa College in Oceanside, California before transferring to Humboldt State University. She is an Environmental Biology major with Watershed Management and Soil Science minors. While at HSU, in the summer of 2014, she participated in the Graduate Preparation Institute at the University of Utah as a laboratory research assistant in Dr. Ramesh Goel’s Civil and Environmental Engineering laboratory where she conducted research on bacteriophage virus and bacteria in order to see if sludge samples from wastewater treatment plants from across the state contained beneficial phages that could work to eliminate the bacterial film at the surface of the treatment plants. In 2015 she was then selected to participate in the NSF funded LSAMP Global Awareness Program in Chiang Mai Thailand at Chiang Mai University where she worked in Assistant Professor Somporn Chantara’s Environmental Chemistry laboratory where she conducted research on PM10 and air pollution, by burning five plant biomass samples in a burn chamber to mimic burning in the ambient air. She says that living and researching in Thailand was an amazing experience that benefited her life in many academic and personal ways. Laura has attended the California Forum for Diversity in Graduate Education conference and the Emerging Researchers National Conference in Washington D.C. for the last two years where she has presented her summer research. Laura’s future goals include furthering her education while staying true to her morals as an indigenous scientist who hopes to make a positive impact for mother earth.