IAhmed1Major: Genetics

Minor: Psychology

Graduation Year: 2021

How did you decide on your major?

I was originally a pre-med student with an interest in reproductive endocrinology as a prospective career field. Genetics gave the opportunity to fulfill all of my health prerequisites while also taking courses that were related to my chosen career field. I’ve since shifted my attention to dental medicine, but genetics has provided me the frame of mind and way of thinking that is applicable to all STEM fields.

What is it about your chosen field (and the department) that appeals to you?

Genetics is a largely analytical and conceptual discipline. It takes biological processes that we’ve learned about in other science classes and provides an in-depth explanation that pertains to the field. Genetics is also an ever-evolving science with new discoveries and techniques being developed every day. As a result, there is always an opportunity to learn more in genetics. This is extremely important in the health and dental professions, as these fields encourage students to go beyond the boundaries of science in the classroom and relate to science in ways that might not be taught in traditional STEM classes.

Do you have a favorite class/professor within your major?DWinchester2

Dr. Karen Schindler was the professor that I first encountered in my journey as a genetics major. Her research in the Aurora Kinases and their impact on mouse oocyte phenotype interested me from freshman year, and I had the amazing opportunity to work in her lab as a junior. She is also my genetics advisor as well as my professor for Social, Legal and Ethical Implications of the New Genetics. She has been involved in my process as a genetics major from the start, and I owe a lot of my interest and knowledge in the field to her.

What are your favorite academic experiences outside of your major?

I am also interested in psychology, as psychology has implications across all disciplines and career fields. There are many psychology courses provided at Rutgers, and I’ve enjoyed taking courses that range from forensic psychology to learning processes. My favorite psychology course is Abnormal Psychology with Dr. Lyra Stein.

What are your other Rutgers activities?

I am a part of the Women in the Health Professions and Rutgers Amnesty. I am also a part of the SAS Honors program.

What are your plans following graduation?

I am in the process of applying to dental school, so hopefully I will be going to dental school in the Fall after I graduate.

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