Why did you choose to attend The University of Texas at Austin?
I chose to attend UT Austin because it is a top-tier university that offers an outstanding intellectual environment to facilitate the growth and development of its students. The university provides a wide range of opportunities and resources. The campus is also incredibly diverse, and students are open to a world of ideas and challenges. UT is located at the heart of Austin, which is such a creative and energetic city. The university’s culture of discovery and research, its unique history of traditions, its unmatched spirit and unity, and its numerous organizations all contribute to the valuable and transformative experience of being a Longhorn.
What’s your dream job after graduation?
I’m not quite sure what my plans are post-graduation. If I don’t pursue medical school, I may want to attend graduate school or even law school and study intellectual property law. Entering a career in science policy has fascinated me for some time now also. Science plays an extremely important role in policy making, and policies have significant impacts on scientific research. This field combines two of my interests — public policy and science. As a science policy analyst, I could provide my (future) scientific expertise on issues and educate the public and media about the benefits and implications of scientific research. Science policy would be a challenging but very gratifying career.
If you could travel to one spot anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?
If I could travel to one spot in the world, I would visit Rome. I love exploring different cultures and learning about their arts and humanities. Rome houses many of the world’s most famous and treasured paintings and sculptures. The city’s museums, monuments and the Coliseum commemorate every era of Roman history. Rome also boasts marvelous architecture –- from the ancient Roman Forum to the wondrous Pantheon. Not only does Italy’s capital offer these one-of-a-kind cultural and entertainment features, it also provides some of the best shopping and food and drink experiences.
What music are you listening to?
I enjoy listening to all types of music. I like pop, pop rock, soul, and alternative music in particular. My favorite musicians of the moment are Adele, Regina Spektor and Ron Pope. Adele is an incredible artist. I love her individuality, her bluesy voice, and her powerful song lyrics. In contrast, my workout playlist usually consists of pop and hip-hop songs.
What are your favorite Web sites? Why?
I have a lot of favorite Web sites. Some of my list includes Google, Facebook, CNN, Gmail, YouTube, Pandora, Yahoo!, ESPN, NBA, The New York Times, TED, Futurity and Hulu. These sites cover all the basic requests of many college students –- e-mail, video access, news, search engines, social networking, sports and music. These are also my most viewed sites. Anytime I browse the Internet, I have multiple tabs open. I listen to music as I check my e-mail and Facebook accounts, read up on the latest news on Yahoo! or The New York Times, or check scores of NBA games. Some may not have heard of Futurity. This is a Web site dedicated to publishing research news from leading universities in the U.S., U.K. and Canada. Learning about advancements and developments being made in health, medicine, science and society and culture is fascinating.
What’s your pick: Tex-Mex or Texas barbecue?
Tex-Mex would be my pick. I’ve never been a fan of Texas barbecue much to the chagrin of my Texas friends.
Where are your favorite places to go in Austin? What are your favorite things to do in Austin?
Favorite places: Lady Bird Lake, Zilker Park/Barton Springs, South Congress, the State Capitol and Austin’s eccentric coffee shops. My favorite things to do: running around Lady Bird Lake, kayaking or “SUP-ing,” attending theatre productions and concerts, going to museums and exploring the city’s cultural assets. Austin is a beautiful, magnificent city with so much to see and do. It offers abundant resources and a lively entertainment scene.
What are your favorite academic subjects? What are you interested in studying in the future?
My favorite academic subjects are neurobiology, health science, humanities, Shakespeare and economics. I am interested in studying neuroscience in the future. It has been my favorite field of study within the sciences. I am currently taking Vertebrate Neurobiology, and it has been one of the best classes I have taken at UT thus far. Neuroscience consistently presents the formidable challenge of making sense of all of the complexities of the nervous system and how it defines us as human beings.
What tip would you give to someone new to the UT campus?
Get involved and take full advantage of all the resources this campus has to offer. By joining an organization or engaging in opportunities like undergraduate research, study abroad or community service, you will meet and connect with new people, explore your passions and interests and learn a lot about yourself. I always tell friends and peers that some of my most enriching experiences have taken place outside of the classroom. UT really does transform lives and it will be an exceptionally valuable experience, but you, the student, must take the initiative to go out and find what is it you want to do. I knew early that I wanted to make a difference on campus, and so, I joined organizations that would allow me to improve the campus and create positive change.
Tell us a little about your family:
My immediate family consists of my mom, dad, and brother. My mom grew up in Toronto, Canada and moved to Los Angeles when she was a teenager. My dad is originally from Long Island, New York and eventually ended up in California. They met while living in LA and, after getting married, settled in Pacific Palisades, right along the coast. My family now resides in Dallas after moving to Texas over six years ago. My brother is fourteen years old and just started high school. I hope that he decides to attend UT as well!
What are your favorite free-time activities?
My favorite hobbies are reading, working out, visiting art museums or the Harry Ransom Center, hanging out with friends, and watching my favorite television shows or sports teams. When I’m not busy, I like to be active and do things out of the ordinary. Some of my favorite moments from my first year in college came from times when friends and I found ourselves in places we hadn’t imagined or doing activities we hadn’t planned.
Name one interesting or quirky thing about yourself:
Not many people know that I grew up in Los Angeles. I lived about two minutes from the beach and had a view of the mountains from my balcony. I moved to Dallas, Texas when I was thirteen. I definitely consider myself a true Texan now (despite my unfavorable opinion of Texas barbecue).