Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree?
During my undergraduate degree and research, I became intrigued by the idea of precision medicine, where one could apply bench to bedside to bench approaches to improve the care of patients and define fundamental processes in human physiology. In order to become immersed in this process and gain skills to advance both clinical and basic science, I decided to go to graduate school.
Why did you decide to study at UBC?
I chose to study at UBC because of my supervisor, Dr. Stuart Turvey, who is a recognized expert in pediatric clinical immunology and primary immunodeficiency diseases. As one of only 5 pediatric clinical immunologists in BC, working with him gave me privileged access to unique patient samples not available anywhere else in the world.
What is it specifically, that your program offers, that attracted you?
The Experimental Medicine program is focused on understanding the pathogenesis and treatment of disease, which is precisely the goal of my PhD.
What was the best surprise about UBC or life in Vancouver?
It is an extremely beautiful place with lots of opportunities to be outdoors, hiking, boating, and exploring!
What aspect of your graduate program do you enjoy the most or are looking forward to with the greatest curiosity?
I am enjoying being able to learn new skills, meet the patients I study, and directly inform patient management.
What do you see as your biggest challenge(s) in your future career?
Staying focused as everything is interesting!
What aspects of your life or career before now have best prepared you for your UBC graduate program?
I did a Directed Studies during my undergraduate degree in the laboratory of Dr. Michael Gold (UBC) and continued my work there as a Research Assistant. This provided me with many extremely useful critical thinking and technical skills.
What do you like to do for fun or relaxation?
Weightlifting, kayaking, and hanging out with my friends.
What advice do you have for new graduate students?
Make sure you have a good work-life balance, have a clear plan for your degree (as the independence can be daunting for many), and read read read!