Growing up and living in rural, upstate New York, there are a lot of things that stay off of your radar. I was always interested in science, technology, and medicine, but had very little exposure to the world of engineering until about four years ago.
As a competitive tennis player, my drive to be a college athlete steered much of my college search. Additionally, I knew that I wanted to go to a small school and to make an impact on the community, leading me to seek out liberal arts schools. I was recruited to Hobart and William Smith Colleges (HWS) in the Finger Lakes region of New York, and was excited to jump into the scientific community there. Though it was strong in traditional sciences, HWS did not have an engineering program. I majored in biology and was a pre-med student until I realized it was not for me. Trying my hand in molecular genetics research didn’t seem to click either, so I took a step away from science.
I loved being part of such an intimate community at HWS and wanted to give back to the school, so after I graduated I worked full-time for the admissions department and assistant-coached for men’s tennis for two years. I knew this was only temporary; I missed working in STEM!
After months of exploration, I discovered bioengineering — the perfect combination of biology, medicine, and technology. I was ready for the career switch and excited at the possibility. After applying to several schools with limited familiarity of what I was up against, University of Pennsylvania accepted me into the master’s program and I could not turn down the opportunity. Additionally, my brother was accepted into the Robotics Master’s program at the same time! As one can imagine, this was particularly exciting for my parents, as their years of love and support resulted in two of their children attending excellent programs together.
Continue reading at Penn Engineering’s Medium blog.