Interview with TriBeta T-shirt Design Contest Winner Annette Straub

Annette Straub
Annette Straub

UNC Pembroke’s Psi Lambda chapter of TriBeta is excited to announce that Annette Straub is the winner of our t-shirt design contest! Ms. Straub’s design caught our members’ eyes with its creativity and visual appeal. Her design celebrates the diverse subfields within the biological sciences, including botany, microbiology, medicine, agriculture, environmental science, molecular biology, and biotechnology.

Ms. Straub has been a member of the UNCP community for 10 years and is currently the Business Services Coordinator for the Enrollment Management Division. The TriBeta officers wanted to learn a bit about Ms. Straub and the inspiration behind her design, and she was kind enough to answer the following questions for us via email.

  • What is your favorite thing about UNCP?

What’s not to like – the people I work with are great, the campus is beautiful, the students are awesome, and we have some of the most accomplished faculty around!

  • Do you have a background in biology? If not, what interested you about our t-shirt design contest?

I have a Bachelor’s in Business Administration, which is on the other side of the spectrum of Biology. What interested me was the challenge to create a visual representation on a subject I knew little about, and since it was to be used as a fundraiser, I knew the design had to be attractive and relevant to a broad audience.

Annette Straub's winning t-shirt design
Annette Straub's winning t-shirt design
  • Describe your inspiration for the design and how you created it.

I was researching the different Biological & Environmental Sciences and thinking about images that could be used. I thought of a test tube, microscopes, plants, etc. and then the idea sparked the image of different items used bubbling out of a beaker!

  • What helpful hints do you have for UNCP students for being successful in college?

Going to class, studying, and doing well is all good, but to get the most out of an education, students need to dig deeper and get involved, go on informational interviews, and utilize the Career Center so s/he can find the career they are passionate about. Visualize what you want to do with your education and make a plan to get there utilizing the resources available at UNCP!

  • Several of our TriBeta members are graduating this spring. Is there any advice you would give them as they move forward in their careers?

Research the companies before applying for a job position. Make sure the environment and mission are what you are looking for and make sure there is a path that leads you to your goal whether it be to move up within that company or to get experience that you can build upon to move forward on your career path. Remember, an interview is not only for an employer to see what value you would add to the organization, but it is also to determine if it is a right fit for you, so ask lots of questions and don’t treat interviews like it is a prize to win. Collecting a lot of offers has little value if you would not be happy working there.

  • All of our TriBeta members are asked about their favorite book – what’s yours?

On the fiction side, my vice is the Harry Potter Series. Its imagery takes me to another place and time with infinite possibilities. I came to read them because I just had to see what book would cause both kids and adults to want to wait in line for hours at midnight just to get the next edition!

On the non-fiction side, I don’t have a favorite, but I love to read about the daily lives of historical figures, events, and environments. I am partial to Passport to Hiroshima. It’s like you were there during WWII, but glad you weren’t when you’re done. It’s a wild ride of emotions!

  • Is there anything else that you would like to share with us?

The contest was fun for me, a staff member, to be able to contribute to one of our academic departments' activities. I enjoyed it. I also watched the live stream of the honey collection. Attending UNCP and working at UNCP has a different feel, and activities where staff can get involved with students and their studies is nice way to remind us what we are all striving towards – a happy, educated, thriving future.

If you see Ms. Straub, please congratulate her on an awesome t-shirt design. We thank her for supporting TriBeta and for offering some great advice!

Anyone who is interested in purchasing a t-shirt, sweatshirt, or hoodie featuring this design can visit this website: The fundraiser will be open through April 15th and all proceeds will help support our chapter activities. For more information about TriBeta at UNCP, please contact our faculty advisor, Dr. Amber Rock ( or visit

Article Submitted by TriBeta