Research Staff Spotlight: Nicole Chaudhary

Each month, we feature an Institute Staff member and share with the community a behind-the-scenes through a question and answer session to learn more about their research areas, career path and goals, but most importantly recognize their hard work. For our August 2021 “Staff Spotlight”, we highlight Nicole Chaudhary, a Senior Research Assistant in Dr. Saurabh Thosar’s Lab.

Tell us more about yourself (career path, goals, anything you want us to know, etc.)

“I grew up in the Northern Chicago suburbs and moved to the Salem area about 5 years ago. I received my Bachelor of Science from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. During my 4 years studying at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, I did mostly animal research and also worked on a research project at the Mountain Research Station in Colorado.

During college, I found my way into health care. I worked as a resident assistant in a memory care home. When I moved to Salem, I worked at an infectious disease clinic where I was a drug compounding specialist and I made all the IV drugs for people who needed IV antibiotic therapy. Around that time, I was also a medical assistant and was tasked with giving vaccinations at a travel clinic.

During my time in Oregon, I decided to pursue a graduate degree. I received a Master of Public Health (MPH) from the OHSU-PSU School Public Health. One of my favorite courses was my occupational health class. I specialized in environmental systems in human health during my MPH program. I graduated in 2020 and decided to transition into research. I wanted to use my previous research and health care skills and transition to clinical research.”

What current research projects are you working on?

“I am a Senior Research Assistant in Dr. Saurabh Thosar’s Lab, working on the Goldilocks study. In the Goldilocks study, our team look at how sleep impacts the cardiovascular system. We’re studying how differing sleep duration affects our cardiovascular health, so our vascular endothelial function.

My role in the study is to assist study participants. I follow the participants from when they fill out our eligibility survey, all the way to scheduling them, putting in their orders and sending them reminders, assisting with in- labs, sending participants their home equipment to giving them an exit survey. It’s a very cool process that I get to see them from the moment they are interested in the study, through enrollment and their participation in the study.”

What do you like most about working for OHSU/Institute/occupational health research?

“Everyone at OHSU is very nice, warm, and welcoming. I enjoy working at a place where others enjoy coming to work. It’s a really fun place to be when everyone really likes what they’re doing. I feel lucky to work with Dr. Thosar and my colleague, Meera. OHSU and the Institute offers a very supportive and good working environment.” 

What are your favorite hobbies outside of work? Home-life is very important to our health and well-being and is interconnected to our work-life.

“On the weekends, I enjoy farming, gardening, and working on my family’s small farm. Other hobbies of mine include knitting and biking. I have two German shepherds, Lucky and Bausen. I enjoy taking trips to the beach with them.”

“I have a large family. I have 6 sisters and recently gained 4 sisters-in-law. Now I have 10 sisters, as well as 11 nieces and nephews. I love to spend time with my family.”

Read more staff spotlights here: