Amanda Dell’Olio

Hometown: North Arlington, NJ
Major: Chemistry / Minor: Mathematics
College: College of Science

What was you favorite Honors class?

My favorite Honors class was the First Year Inquiry Series course Savage Psychopaths and Predatory States: Explorations in the History of Modern Violence taught by Professor Jeffrey Burds because the class was so unique and interdisciplinary. It was largely a history elective which was a nice break from my science and math intensive course load. However, my favorite part about the class was that for our final project we wrote a paper and created a presentation on any topic we wanted that related to violence. I did my project on forensic science: the investigation of violence. I’ve always had an interest in forensic science and would potentially like to have a career in this field so it was a lot of fun to read books and papers about a chemistry topic that I’m deeply interested in and tie it in to a history elective.

During your time at Northeastern, what experiences shaped who you are today as a graduating senior?

Both of my co-ops were the most valuable experiences I had at Northeastern. My first co-op was in the process development group at Cubist Pharmaceuticals (now Merck). I enjoyed this job, and it helped me realize what I want to do with chemistry when I graduate. I initially thought I’d like to work at a pharmaceutical company and synthesize drugs; however, I realized that my favorite part of that co-op was the analytical work I was doing. Therefore, I decided to pursue an analytical chemistry position for my second co-op. For my second co-op, I was a chemistry intern at Walt Disney World. I analyzed and maintained the water quality of all the animals enclosures at Animal Kingdom, The Seas with Nemo and Friends, and other satellite locations throughout Disney. This was truly the best experience of my life. I loved the work, the company, and the people I met while in Florida. I wish that co-op never had to end.

I’ve also been shaped by all the leadership activities I took part in such as Toastmasters, the Honors First and Second Year Leadership Retreats, being an Enhancing Honors and Chemistry Mentor, and being an Honors Ambassador. As a result of these things, I’m more comfortable in front of crowds and am a more successful leader.

Over the years, I also fell in love with with Northeastern Hockey and become more active thanks to Group Fitness classes.

What is your best memory from being a part of the Honors Program?

I’ve loved every minute of being in the Honors Program. From the minute I moved in, I felt welcomed and at home thanks to my amazing roommates and floormates. Getting to explore Boston, go to hockey games, and take part in Husky Hunt with my fellow Honors students was so much fun. However, my most memorable Honors Program experience was going on the Honors Dialogue of Civilizations to Rome the summer after my freshman year. I had never traveled abroad before so simply leaving the country was a big deal for me, and going to Italy was a more amazing experience than I every could have imagined it would be. I loved learning the language by attending Italian class and by immersing myself in everyday life. Exploring landmarks such as the Trevi Fountain, Roman Forum, Herculaneum, and the Duomo in Florence was breathtaking, and the Honors Program did such a wonderful job of organizing tours. And of course, the food in Italy was always delicious. I still find myself craving gelato. It was interesting to see how life in Italy compared to and differed from my life in America especially considering my family is Italian-American. I had so much fun exploring Italy and learning about the culture with other Honors students some of which I’m still friends with today.

Where are you headed after you graduate?

I will be staying at Northeastern to complete the PlusOne Program to get my master’s in chemistry. I will be completing my master’s research in Adam Hall’s lab which focuses on forensic chemistry. After I get my master’s degree, I plan to move to Florida and hopefully get an analytical chemistry job in either the forensic or environmental sector.