Could you tell us a little bit about your educational background?
During my undergrad, I worked in an enzyme research laboratory where I purified and characterized specific acetylating proteins found across all kingdoms of life. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry.
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 always knew I had an interest in genetics and healthcare, but I wasn’t sure which career was the best fit for me. Fortunately, I had the privilege of shadowing at San Francisco Kaiser Genetics and with Counsyl’s Genetic Counseling Mentorship program. I was excited that genetic counseling had a multitude of applications for this degree. It truly is a career of compassion in which we have the honor to empower patients by providing resources, counseling, and education.
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?
A resilient single mother raised me—and I was determined not to place any financial burden on her and to take full responsibility for my education. I worked as soon as I turned 18 to start saving for college, so I worked full time while attending school. It was a challenge to balance school, work, and research. During interview season I lost my grandmother, who was a big part in my decision for this field. Through these difficult moments, I felt incredibly blessed for the support I received, and I was able to overcome these obstacles.
Once you decided to pursue a Genetic Counseling degree, how did you know that KGI was the right school for you?
I applied to KGI with the dream of being a genetic counselor that was part of a unique approach to education. I was excited to learn that this school had the advantage of being housed inside a pharmacy school, but what solidified it was the feeling of belonging during the interview. My passion and excitement were met with warmth, care, and support with the faculty; I envisioned myself at KGI.
What are you most looking forward to about beginning your Genetic Counseling studies at KGI?
I would have to say I’m most looking forward to learning from the unique perspectives and experiences from my peers and faculty. We all have something to contribute, and I can’t wait to grow with everyone.
What is one fun and interesting fact about you?
I used to spend my summers on my grandparent’s ostrich ranch. (Ostriches make the best jerky!) So if you have any inquiries regarding ostriches or emus or want to hear exciting stories about them, I’m happy to share!