Could you tell us a little bit about your educational background?
I received my bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science from UC San Diego in 2019. My senior thesis project focused on the life history of an endangered species of gray whales, and I was even able to study migrating whales in the field.
What first got you interested in the healthcare field as a career choice? There are a lot of career options in the field -nursing, physician assistant, etc., what made you decide that genetic counseling was the right practice area/career choice for you?
Before I knew about genetic counseling, I was working in the field of Biotechnology on cell therapy products. In this role, I struggled with the fact that I was not able to work directly with patients, which led to my search for other career options. I never imagined that I would be able to work in healthcare due to my squeamishness, so I was overjoyed when I discovered genetic counseling. Not only does this field enable me to follow my passions for patient care and genetics, but it’s also filled with some of the kindest and most supportive professionals I’ve ever met.
What type of obstacles have you had to overcome on the road to getting your education and in particular in pursuing your Genetic Counseling degree?
Making the decision to go back to school was very difficult from both a financial and emotional standpoint. I had already changed my career path from environmental science to biotech, and I felt a lot of pressure to make sure that genetic counseling would be the best career fit for me. At the same time, I struggled with feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt that nearly prevented me from applying to GC programs. Support from family, friends, and mentors made all the difference in my path to graduate school.
What are you most looking forward to about beginning your Genetic Counseling studies?
After working behind a lab bench for several years, I’m really looking forward to working directly with patients and being able to form meaningful connections. I’m also eager to collaborate with current and future genetic counselors to advocate for improved healthcare services—particularly access to reproductive procedures.
What is one fun and interesting fact about you?
I know the words to almost every Disney song, and I love to listen to Broadway musical soundtracks.
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