Could you tell us a little bit about your educational background?
I received my Bachelor’s of Science in Biology and Psychological Science with a minor in Anthropology from NAU in 2014, and my Master’s of Education in Human Relations there as well in 2017.
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?
Since a young age, I’ve always loved genetics, stemming from a middle school science fair project on rabbit coat color genetics, and I’ve also always been interested in counseling psychology. I never knew there was a career that blended both, until I heard about Genetic Counseling in 2014, a few months after I graduated from undergrad. It was the perfect blend of both my favorite area of biology and my interests in psychology. I liked that Genetic Counseling was a field that offered the opportunity to work clinically with patients, but also to be on the cutting edge of research in science and technological advances.
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?
I’m from a small and somewhat remote town where the closest Genetic Counselors are 2 and 4 hours drive, respectively. To accomplish my shadowing experience so I could apply, I had to drive up to 200 miles each way. Also, I had to complete several post-bacc courses, including Anatomy and Physiology, while working full time (ask me about the time I dissected a kidney in my kitchen in March!)
Once you decided to pursue a Genetic Counseling degree, how did you know that KGI was the right school for you?
I liked that while KGI has all the resources of and proximity to a giant city like Los Angeles, Claremont doesn’t feel like a big city. I also spend a lot of time outdoors and its proximity to the mountains was very appealing!
What are you most looking forward to about beginning your Genetic Counseling studies at KGI?
Both the unique clinical rotations and the highly engaged faculty!
What is one fun and interesting fact about you?
I love archaeology and am a site steward with Arizona State Parks, hiking out to remote sites to monitor them for vandalism. I also love chickens and have raised and shown them (yes, there are actual chicken shows—think like the westminister of poultry) since I was 11 years old.