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NECC grad faces obstacles in quest to become research chemist

by Paul Tennant, Eagle Tribune

Luis Robles, a recent graduate of Northern Essex Community College, dares to dream big.

For many years, he has aspired to become a scientist. Specifically, he wants to be a research chemist who makes discoveries that help people.

"I do aspire to earn a Ph.D. in chemistry," he said during a recent interview.

He's on track to achieve that goal. Robles received the Excellence Award for earning the highest grade point average among students majoring in applied science at Northern Essex. He is now participating in an internship with the Station1 Frontiers Fellowship.

Robles was among 23 students accepted into this intense program that combines study with laboratory work. He and three other Northern Essex graduates are Station1 interns. The others, he said, are from Texas, California, New York, Florida, Maryland and Puerto Rico.

During the next few weeks, he and other interns will be searching for less expensive ways of manufacturing medicines. They are based at the Riverwalk on Merrimack Street.

Robles' path has not been easy. Born in the U.S. Virgin Islands, he attended four different high schools. His grades were very good, but he said he missed out on scholarships because of not being in one place for very long.


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