“I was always interested in the healthcare field, and knew at a young age that I wanted to be a doctor. I believe a doctor should know the inner workings behind the devices they are using, and I thought I would gain this knowledge through studying bioengineering. By exploring the development of technology and medicine, I’ve gained a unique perspective of the devices I will be using in the field. This program has opened me up to many problems in medicine that I wasn’t even aware about. Although my experience in bioengineering has been great so far, I wish I had known the curriculum focuses more on engineering applications much more than diseases and the physiology of the body. Wanting to learn more about the biology of the brain and nervous system, I decided to double major in neurobiology.
I am currently in Dr. Deok-Ho Kim’s lab, researching how to build neuromuscular junctions in vitro using stem cells. The project aims to eventually model Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease. This research opportunity allows me to use both my bioengineering and neurobiology backgrounds, and I hope that it allows me to contribute to deciphering the inner workings of a disease that affects so many people.
Double majoring and taking pre-med requirements has proven to be difficult over the years, as there are many necessary classes for each specific program. I have therefore taken summer quarter every year, and plan on taking another summer quarter starting in June. Although it has not been easy, it is definitely doable. I am still able to graduate in four years and enjoy life.
During my time at UW, I have tried to branch out in order to take full advantage of the opportunities available, and to meet new people. I have joined multiple clubs on campus, and am currently serving as the Medical Chair of the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES), Vice-President of PersianCircle and Fundraising Chair of the Nick of Time Foundation at UW. I love being on the leadership teams of all these clubs as I get to help plan events and make connections with members of the community. I would advise any student that is looking to explore all UW has to offer to join different clubs, as it opens up many new opportunities and friendships.
My advice to future students is to not be afraid of exploring multiple career options at once. If you take a class that interests you, keep on taking the consecutive courses—you might discover a passion you didn’t know you had. I would also encourage students to get involved in many extracurricular activities outside of the classroom. I think it is important to have this balance in your life, and I wish I had known this sooner in my college career — however, I am happy with the decisions I have made, and am looking forward to applying my bioengineering knowledge in order to become a well-rounded physician in the future.”