June 17, 2022

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For the month of June, we'll be featuring LGBTQIA+ staff and residents in the LabCentral community. This month features Gerry Deshycka, Research Associate at Cerberus Therapeutics.

How do you celebrate Pride and what does it mean to you?

Pride is living your most authentic self, no matter what your sexuality or gender identity is. Our core values in life are shaped by the norms that society have engraved in us. For me, Pride means holding onto the values that shaped who I am and letting go of the ones that no longer serve a purpose. It's true that we only live once, so live a life for the truest version of you. 

What is your favorite part of working with Cerberus? 

My mentor said that talents are fragile and unique. It takes certain environments for each of them to thrive to their fullest potentials. What I love about Cerberus is that we understand this. Cerberus operates in almost like a family-style start-up, where we invest in each other’s growth, professionally or personally. We said: it's okay, life happens, priorities changes, and we understand. We live by the value that  we do need support even from co-workers to be the best version of ourselves. When you feel secure in life, that you feel you can depend on people around you, then you can take all of the challenges in life and work. 

Tell me about your family/partner. 

My dad is a dreamer, and my mom is a hard worker, and I felt very lucky that I inherited their best traits. My parents let me do whatever I want, that shaped my aspirations in the world: I only do things that I'm passionate about. My siblings and I are very different than each other, and I'm thankful that my mom never compared us. We are unique in our own ways. In a way, she truly raised us in the queer values.

What was the last book you read?

I recently finished listening to The Midnight Library. We read this book as part of book club at LabCentral. The takeaway point is that there are many universes in which we could be anyone based on the choices we made in life. But we live in this one, so we need to make the most out of it. 

If you had to pick one type of food to eat for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Oh god that's hard. I'm easily bored that meal planning never worked for me. If I had to pick, I'll choose mpek-mpek. This fried chewy fishy dough seasoned with sweet, spicy and sour sugar cane sauce. My mom always has it ready when I finally at home in Indonesia during my annual visit. 

What is your favorite movie?

I learned that we like movie not because of the content, but the circumstances when we watched them. So for me, my favorite movie is the Prestige by the Nolan brothers. I watched it on a rainy night when I just finished the last exams in the national training, in which we are being rigorously tested and selected for the Indonesian team of the International Biology Olympiad. I shared the ambitions and the willingness to do anything to be the very best with the main characters, and also the realization that whether any of this hardwork and obsession worthwhile. It was a good reminder that there is more to life than just the prestige of being the best.