Lauri Zaker is a Histologist at Acepix Biosciences in Hayward, California. She prepares animal tissue to put on slides for scientists or pathologists to view.
What college biotechnology program did you complete?
I attended the Microscopy/Histology program at Merritt College.
What degree or certificate(s) do you hold?
Microscopy Certificate, Histology Certificate
What is your job title?
Describe what you do for your job.
I gross (inspect with the naked eye for initial diagnostic information), trim, process, embed and cut animal tissue to put on slides and then stain them for scientists or pathologists to view.
Please describe an average day at work
I assess what projects need attention first, start the warm water bath to float sections, face blocks of tissue, use ice water to cool them down, cut ribbons of tissue, float them on the warm water, pick up on slides, dry on rack, deparaffinize in steps, stain in any of various stains, dehydrate in steps and mount coverslips on slides.
How did you decide on a biotechnology career?
I decided to switch careers and was told, by a nurse, about histology. Merritt College just opened a histology program right at that time.
Can you describe any challenges that you overcame in pursuing this career?
Nobody really knew what a histologist was, including the college counselor where I attained my biology associate degree. I combed the internet and read about the new program that had just opened at Merritt on a histology forum and enrolled.
What advice would you give someone who is interested in a biotech career?
Biotechnology is a growing area of many possible careers, since there is always research and development in the area of disease eradication, and therapeutic measures that are utilized at hospitals and health maintenance facilities.