Could you tell us a little bit about your educational background?
I started out my college career at Oregon State University studying Bioengineering. I very quickly figured out that engineering was not for me and transferred to Lewis & Clark College for my sophomore year. There, I studied Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and graduated 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?
I’ve always known that the healthcare field was for me. For a long time, I planned on going to medical school but it never felt quite right—I was never excited about it. When I heard about genetic counseling for the first time in my senior-year Human Genes & Disease class, it felt like the perfect fit. I love that it is such a multidisciplinary career: genetic counselors are scientists, teachers, advocates, and counselors all wrapped into one!
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’ve always known that I had a passion for Molecular Biology and Genetics. However, I struggled with how I would pursue that passion as a career. I originally had planned on doing research, but after spending a year in a research lab, decided that the career wasn’t for me. I then planned on going to medical school because it seemed like the only other logical option. That never felt right either. I felt so lost the first three years of my undergraduate career because I had a passion, but no career planned based on that. When I finally heard about genetic counseling during the spring semester of my senior year, I knew that it was the perfect fit for me. I had to take some time off from school to finish my prerequisites and gain some experience, but it was well worth the wait!
Once you decided to pursue a Genetic Counseling degree, how did you know that KGI was the right school for you?
I’ve loved Claremont ever since I first visited when I was looking at undergraduate colleges. So, when I saw that KGI had a genetic counseling program, I was excited. When I came for my interview, I knew that KGI was the place for me. Everyone I met was so kind, welcoming, and enthusiastic; it just felt like the perfect fit. I also like that KGI does a course-heavy first year so that students can really focus on and be prepared for clinical rotations the second year.
What are you most looking forward to about beginning your Genetic Counseling studies at KGI?
I’m so excited to meet everyone in my cohort and to continue my study of genetics!
What is one fun and interesting fact about you?
Four days after my graduation from Lewis & Clark College, I embarked on a two-month solo expedition in Europe! I worked three jobs during my senior year to be able to do it. My adventures included doing a surf camp in Portugal, hiking in the south of France, and visiting friends in Berlin.