Your grades don’t ruin your passion, doubts do!

By: Ms. Sasikarn Daphne Blendel Hingert

Have you ever wondered what you will do with your degree in Biomedical Science? Did you give up just because you thought you couldn’t become a medical doctor? Don’t let doubts consume your passion in science. Your degree in biomedical science is more than just for becoming a medical doctor.

I’m almost sure all biomedical students deal with these doubts at least once during their four years at MUIC. My initial goal was to go to medical school until I took the course Human Anatomy I. It was a fun course, very educational and enjoyable. However, during that course I realized medical school is not my place. Moreover, I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth to be able to afford medical school. Although my parents did tell me it was a good investment to put their money in medical school and then gain back the investment later when I start practicing (they did mention the Jewish interest).

Daphne
But what is the point of going for a career not because you love it but because you love the pay? After being confused for some time during my sophomore year, I was given the privilege to join the bioethics research group at the center of Bioethics at Columbia University (NYC) through a collaboration with MUIC for a summer internship. During that time, I was introduced to a career in research in the field of stem cells. I admit that summer internship at Columbia University did have an impact on my career path.

After graduating from MUIC in 2013, I started looking for opportunities for my graduate studies. I also realized my financial dependence on my parents for the past 20 years and my goal was to gain some financial independence. I was offered two opportunities, a teaching job at a prestigious high school with a high salary and a research assistantship at MUIC. People around me suggested that I take the job. It came down to the point where I had to choose between passion and money. So, I declined the offer and joined MUIC as a research assistant for a full year. During that time, I mastered laboratory skills and sharpened my scientific knowledge through research projects assigned to me. I then applied to Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden for my master’s in Biotechnology. I was awarded the Sievart Larsson full scholarship for the entire two years of the program. Along with being hardheaded, I also take great pleasure in doing things people say I cannot do.

Chalmers University is one of the top-ranked engineering universities in Europe. Trust me, it’s not that easy to cope with the lectures, assignments, and group work especially when you don’t have an engineering background. I remember dedicating my entire Easter break to ‘MATLAB’ computation. Fortunately, doubting my ability has never been my weak point. I pushed for perfection in my work. Instead of just working hard to get the work done, I work hard to perfect my work. This is why I pursue the career I’m passionate about.

In my free time, I work as a student ambassador for Chalmers. I write blogs, attend education fairs and global education forums like the Nobel Week Dialogue, etc. I was also sponsored by Chalmers to travel and promote the university to prospective students especially in Thailand. The ultimate reason behind taking up this job is because I believe in the ability of MUIC students. Many MUIC alumni were awarded this same prestigious scholarship grants that I had been offered in the past years. So, who’s more apt to continue this tradition?

I have recently graduated from Chalmers and have started working at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Sweden as a researcher in the field of regenerative medicine and biomaterials. My research mainly deals with the study of human mesenchymal stem cells in hydrogels. For now, I’m very grateful that I get to do something I love. And I’m especially proud because everything I’ve achieved is through my diligence and ability. Let’s see where life takes me in the next chapter of my life. Remember, the secret is to believe in yourself. Don’t stand back and let time waste you.

Here’s some of the links regarding my extracurricular activities, if you care to venture.

-Chalmers http://www.chalmers.se/en/education/next-stop/stuamb/Pages/Daphne.aspx

-Swedish Institute
https://www.flickr.com/photos/utrikesdepartementet/sets/72157668270238281/

-Nobel week dialogue, 2015 (link) https://youtu.be/7NyV25Vuhsk

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