Major: Biological Sciences
Minor: Classical Civilization
How did you decide on your major?
I decided I wanted to pursue a career in the medical field during 8th grade. My mother and I used to watch the television show House, M.D. and I was just so amazed by how ingenious everybody on the show appeared to be. The fact that they could utilize their intelligence to help every single patient that came to them encouraged me to work harder in my classes and begin to pursue a science-based curriculum in high school. Unfortunately, my grandmother became very sick during high school and began undergoing a high number of treatments at hospitals. I would accompany her and interact with all of her doctors and ask many questions. Her suffering, and all that her doctors’ did to relieve that suffering, played a big part in my decision to major in Biological Sciences and to pursue a career in medicine. I have always wanted to help people in any way that I can and a career in medicine will help to me to continue to do just that. Without a strong background in biology, math, physics, and chemistry, I would be unable to pursue that goal. Majoring in Biological Sciences has enabled me to continue pursuing my goal of becoming a physician.
What is it about your chosen field (and the department) that appeals to you?
Majoring in Biological Sciences allows me to learn about a variety of topics in a visual and tangible way. Having the opportunity to conduct research has allowed me to take what I have learned in the classroom and apply it to my research. Majoring in Biological Sciences allows me to think critically about the world around me. I have always had a thirst for knowledge and majoring in Biological Sciences has supplied me with the tools to continue to research and learn about a variety of topics for the rest of my life. This could only have been possible with the help of my advisor Dr. Carr-Schmid and the plethora of classes that Rutgers University has to offer each semester. Dr. Carr-Schmid and the department have been extremely helpful during my time at Rutgers University. Having a strong support system is extremely important during college and I cannot thank the department enough for everything that they have done for me.
Do you have favorite class/professor within your major?
I really enjoyed Introduction to Cancer with Dr. Carolyn d’Arville. As cancer is such a widespread disease, her class was very applicable to my career plans and interests. She is also a very good professor and a sweet woman who is always going the extra mile for her students. I also really enjoy General Physics with Dr. Abdelbaki Brahmia. He is such an energetic and enthusiastic professor who really enjoys seeing his students succeeds. The topics covered in class are always fascinating and relevant to not only my career but everyday life.
What are your favorite academic experiences outside of your major?
My favorite experiences outside of my major has included events with the Classics department. The Classics department is a small and tight-knit group of students, professors, and researchers that have been both mentors and friends to me. Minoring in Classical Civilization has allowed me to think philosophically, develop ethical frameworks, and write thought-provoking papers on a variety of topics.
What are your other Rutgers activities?
Every Friday afternoon I lead mentoring sessions for the freshman class at Piscataway High School through Rutgers Future Scholars. On my weekends I also volunteer with Habitat for Humanity to help construct houses in towns surrounding New Brunswick and Piscataway. Last year, my roommates and I founded the first collegiate chapter of the national charity Big Hearts to Little Hearts to raise awareness for congenital heart disease. In addition to my classes, I conduct honors research for credit through the Marine and Coastal Sciences department by characterizing the antioxidant system of the diatom Chaetoceros tenuissimus. I am also a general member of the Classics Club, Bioethics Club, the Eta Sigma Phi Honorary Society for Classical Studies, and the Alpha Epsilon Delta Health Preprofessional Honor Society.
What are your plans following graduation?
Following graduation I plan to work as a medical scribe or a medical assistant for a couple of years to gain experience in the medical field before I apply to medical school. I will primarily be applying to medical schools in major cities as it has always been an ambition of mine to live and work in a city. I also plan to volunteer as an emergency medical technician.