" Don’t stress so much during high school. Focus on learning and engaging with the material instead of solely getting a grade for getting into college. My biggest takeaways from high school were not the formulas or grammatical structures, but they were about the importance of social issues from 9th grade, time management in 10th grade, public speaking in 11th grade, and debating in 12th grade."
My career roadmap has been somewhat defined. (Was defined in high school, but deviated during college.)
Worked with a team to devise a Hepatitis B Prevention Vaccine Measure to administer 2 vaccines over an 18 month period to underserved villages in India in a partnership with a hospital chain and research lab
Drug Discovery Lab Alzheimer’s research at UCLA allowed me to recognize that I enjoy delivering the results of research but not conducting the research itself. I also really enjoy content relating to the brain and neuroscience.
Taking a health policy class on the current infrastructure of the healthcare system. This helped me recognize the systemic issues underlying receiving care in the current US healthcare model, and understanding that in order for me to feel fulfilled, I would like to address issues in policy.
Becoming a Public Health 116 TA where I was facilitating conversations to introduce issues and perspectives related to health and medicine.
Took biochemistry and realized I wanted to study and create systemic change, not individual care and band aid fixes like in the medical field.
Created and implement education plans for underserved villages on Indian healthcare, health policy, environmental health, preventative care in the Greater Chennai area
Conducted a Vaccine Symposium Panel with 4 highly esteemed professionals in the field of public health and policy to educate the public on the importance and reasons for childhood immunization.
Here are my extracurriculars relevant to this pathway
DURING MY HIGH SCHOOL CAREER
Treasurer for ASB-love for involvement and leadership
Marathon runner SOAR-taught discipline and determination
Director for AOC Media-I can be creative and in STEM
Natural Aid Organizer for Oxfam America-passion for underserved populations
Bharatanatyam dancer-taught endurance
DURING MY COLLEGE CAREER
TA and Coordinator for Public Health 116, a course on exploring the facets of the public health field and controversies behind each issue
Conducted a Vaccine Symposium panel with distinguished professionals nationwide
Photographer for the Daily Cal, the school’s news source
2 years of research in 4 different labs in various fields of study (Drug Discovery Lab for Alzheimers’, CZ Biohub for microbial epidemiology, etc.)
Health Advocate lead at Highland Hospital
What I'm currently doing/hope to do
I view my professional career as a journey, not a destination, meaning that I have multiple interests and want to be able to make the most impact with the tools I have, the resources I am given, and the effort I put into the field of healthcare. Currently I’m working at a health tech startup in San Francisco as a health consultant, which melds my interest in business, tech, and healthcare as I work with a wide range of healthcare organizations and hospitals to create and implement strategies to help them resolve their challenges and achieve their goals as efficiently and effectively as possible. I look forward to going back to school to pursue a post-secondary education within the next 2 years.
How to maximize my time in high school?
Advice #1: Explore and engage in a wide range of clubs during high school and college, not just the ones exclusive to one field/career.
Advice #2: Find the field of study you enjoy, then keep an open mind in the specific career you want to pursue (ex. I recognized my love for the health field, so I thought I had to become a doctor. Upon going to college, I found that there are a plethora of careers under health, and took a moment to reroute during the summer before my last semester of college. Had I gone into college with a more open mindset, I feel like I could have made that discovery a little earlier).
Advice #3: Don’t stress so much during high school. Focus on learning and engaging with the material instead of solely getting a grade for getting into college. My biggest takeaways from high school were not the formulas or grammatical structures, but they were about the importance of social issues from 9th grade, time management in 10th grade, public speaking in 11th grade, and debating in 12th grade.
Advice #4: During your formative years, it’s important to balance building a combination of soft and hard skills. Learn how to speak with others, how to write an email, how to draft a cover letter, how to create a resume, etc. and reach out to mentors to help you!
Advice #5: It's okay to be/not to be STEM oriented--everyone has different strengths and weaknesses. Play to your strengths!