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Hi Reddit! I am Chris Yarosh, the current Science Policy Fellow at the American Chemical Society having recently finished a Ph.D. in biochemistry. Ask me anything about what it’s like to transition from the lab bench to an “alternative” career!
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ACS AMA Hi Reddit! My name is Chris Yarosh, and I’m the Science Policy Fellow at the American Chemical Society (ACS) in Washington, D.C. I work with ACS’s External Affairs and Communications (EAC) team to promote policies that support science and address the concerns of the chemical community. Before coming to Washington, I earned my Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics from the University of Pennsylvania. For my dissertation, I studied how cells regulate RNA-binding proteins (SFPQ and TRAP150, specifically) to influence pre-mRNA alternative splicing and other cellular processes. When I wasn’t in the lab, I could be found teaching high school students the basics of running experiments or imploding watermelons with rubber bands at the Franklin Institute. I also hold a B.S. in Biochemistry from the University of Scranton (yes, that Scranton) where I did some polymer chemistry research and ruined several expensive pieces of equipment. As the ACS Science Policy Fellow, I work with my EAC colleagues to cover a range of issues of interest to ACS members, including federal funding for scientific research, STEM education, innovation, green chemistry, and regulatory policy. Mostly, this means keeping tabs on the federal agencies that fund chemistry research, helping ACS members get involved in the policy process, and communicating ACS’s positions on critical issues to policymakers. As someone who recently made the jump from bench to desk, I understand how opaque the policy process can be; I also understand just how important it is for scientists to learn as much as they can and get involved. I’m excited to answer any of your questions! Ask me anything! Note: Views expressed here are my own and not necessarily those of ACS. I’ll be back at 12pm EDT (9am PDT, 5pm UTC) to answer your questions. 12:00 PM EDT: Alright, let’s do this… 1:40 PM EDT: Thanks for the questions, Reddit! I did my best to answer a representative swath, but my time is up. Hope it helped!