Could you tell us a little bit about your educational background?
I completed a double major in Psychology and Human Biology at the University of Toronto, and following that I received a Bachelors of Education from the University of Western Ontario, Canada.
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 had previously shadowed many different forms of healthcare professionals and although I became interested in the interactive and dynamic aspect of the healthcare field, none of the more “mainstream” career options really connected with me. When I became a high school teacher, I knew that I really thrived in an environment where I could take on a counseling role and also continue with science education. After tons of research, I discovered genetic counseling, and I was fortunate enough to have observed a genetic counselor at work. I was hooked – being able to educate individuals, families, and even communities to empower them to understand their genetic information and make informed decisions were things I was looking for in a career. I was also excited by the flexibility that the career could offer me since genetic counselors can work in a wide variety of settings.
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 found it challenging to get opportunities to speak to, let alone shadow genetic counselors from different specialty areas, so I had to find other avenues to truly get a sense of the genetic counseling profession as a whole.
What are you most looking forward to about beginning your Genetic Counseling studies?
I can’t wait to connect with current and future genetic counselors and engage in dialogue about how to propel the genetic counseling profession to even greater visibility and inclusiveness. I’m also really excited for the clinical rotation experience!
What is one fun and interesting fact about you?
I love exploring different cultures through their food, and love experimenting in the kitchen. One of my fondest memories as a teacher was opening up a Food Studies class and learning about food with my students.