60 second interview with Aki

We perform these short interviews from time to time, to introduce lab members in London and Okinawa. Our first one is with Aki Masunaga from OIST!


Welcome. What were you doing before you joined OIST? 
I was backpacking across SE Asia for five months after finishing my master's. Shortly after that I landed on a job as an Audubon naturalist at an environmental center in Florida where I rehabilitated rescued animals and educated the public about the environment. 

What does your role at the OIST involve and what do you most enjoy about your role? 
I am responsible for the Oikopleura culture facility at OIST. What I enjoy the most about my job is to be able to transform creative thinking and ideas into action in order to troubleshoot and improve our culture facility. Sampling plankton is always fun too.

What has it been like working at the OIST so far? 
It has been an interesting and stimulating experience to be able to work with people from all over the world.  

If you weren't in science, what would you be and why? 
I would be a dancer because I spent a significant amount of my childhood dancing.

Tell us something your colleagues don't know about you? 
My partner has an entire album dedicated to photos of me sleeping in every mode of public transportation imaginable. 

What hobbies do you have outside of work? 
I love being in the water. I take yoga, ballet, and zumba classes. I love watching my plants grow as well.

If you could meet one person from history, who would it be and why? 
My grandfathers because I didn't get a chance to meet them.

What's your favourite part of the world and why? 
There are still many places I haven't explored so it's hard to say. I hope I can answer this question with confidence later on in my life. 

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
It's a toss between "don't think too hard' and "it's all about the perspective".

Home is…. 
where my heart is.

Nicholas Luscombe