Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree?
I am a clinically trained genetic counsellor and have been working in research settings since I graduated. Through my training and research experience, it was apparent to me that there are significant inequities present that impact whether someone is able to access genetic services or not. Given my experience and interests, I felt like this was an area that I would be well suited to have an impact on. I decided to pursue a doctoral degree to further build my skills and qualifications and to undertake this important research.
Why did you decide to study at UBC?
The University of British Columbia is a hub for genetic counselling research in Canada. The opportunity to work alongside others who are conducting genetic counselling research and building a community here was ultimately why I decided to study at UBC.
What is it specifically, that your program offers, that attracted you?
The Interdisciplinary Studies Program is an excellent choice for me because it allows me the flexibility to take courses across many faculties, and will support my development of interdisciplinary research skills.
What was the best surprise about UBC or life in Vancouver?
As someone who moved from the prairies, one of my favourite things about Vancouver is how mild the winters are. Also, the cherry blossoms in the spring are another bonus.
What aspects of your life or career before now have best prepared you for your UBC graduate program?
I received my MSc in Genetic Counselling at UBC and this is a rigorous program that has prepared me for academic success in my doctoral program. Additionally, I have developed some foundational research skills through my experience as a research genetic counsellor and I have a realistic sense of how to plan for and conduct research.
What advice do you have for new graduate students?
Remember to make time for the things in your life that you enjoy doing, like hobbies and downtime. You are more than just your academic pursuits!