Patriots Cheerleader Maps Genomes For a Living - NECN

Patriots Cheerleader Maps Genomes For a Living

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NBC Boston reporter Eli Rosenberg profiles Theresa Oei, who is a Patriots cheerleader, scientist developing a process to edit genes, and a Yale graduate. (Published Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017)

    Patriots cheerleader Theresa Oei is right at home in a lab.

    The Yale University graduate fell in love with science at an early age, carrying that passion all the way to a job at the Broad Institute, a non-profit bio medical firm in Cambridge.

    "I've always sort of loved the process of doing science, the scientific method, and solving problems," Oei said.

    Oei spends her days working to map genomes, a challenging job, but she wanted more.

    "When I saw the audition I thought this will be a fun thing to do on the weekend, get out of the lab and do something fun," she said. "This was an opportunity to do something different so I tried out for the team."

    Oei auditioned, and made the team.

    This is Oei's first year with the team. She learned Irish-step dancing and ballet, but never had any formal training in cheerleading.

    Oei says everyone has been incredibly supportive, but she does get some looks when people find out about her day and night jobs.

    "I think people are certainly surprised because it's a traditionally I think the stereotype of a scientist doesn't really mix with that of a cheerleader, right?" she said.

    "It is kind of neat to break those barriers, and change people's minds about that because you don't have to fulfill a certain stereotype just because that's what people think you should be," Oei added.