Master’s Student at UCSD specializing on Alzheimer’s Disease
Star sign: Aquarius
Spirit Animal: Hedgehog
Fun Fact: I am from Siberia
How/Why did you get involved with IHC?
IHC’s dedication to creating change via a culturally aware and sustainable manner caught my eye and inspired me to join the organization. I love the emphasis IHC places on maintaining continual communication with the communities it serves and its willingness to remain flexible in order to provide more meaningful aid. Also, the emphasis IHC puts on educating the group or community it is working with is, I believe, essential to sustaining an effective, relevant impact. Lastly, as I am heading into the medical field, the learning opportunities IHC provides for its members very much fed into my passion of healthcare! It is amazing to be a part of something that is creating such positive change close to home!
What projects are you currently involved in?
I am one of the project managers for the English Language Class in Clinica Innovadores de IHC. The goal of this project is to expose the little niños that come to Clinica Innovadores conversational English. We aim to take an interactive, game-based approach to teaching English and hope that this English exposure will inspire the children to further pursue learning the language!
What inspires/drives you?
My inspiration to pursue low-resource medicine stems from my grandfather. He was a trauma surgeon in Siberia who often worked in underprivileged communities surrounding his home city. As a child I grew up on his countless stories about the interesting cases he had seen during his time working as a physician. His curiosity and enthusiasm about medicine awoke an interest about the human body, and his innovative approach to medicine showed me the value in utilizing every resource available to provide quality healthcare outside of a hospital setting. I believe healthcare is a right, not a privilege, and it is this belief that shaped my desire to practice medicine in underprivileged communities. My goal is to structure my future career in medicine in a way that enables this belief to become a reality.
What is your passion?
One of my lifelong passions has been a love for the outdoors. To me, nothing can beat a whiff of fresh mountain air or quiet miles of forest with no bustling cities or crowds. I love going backpacking, skiing, ocean swimming, hiking, rock climbing, etc! Being outside is my source of energy, my de-stressor, and where I feel the most myself.
What are your life/career aspirations?
After I finish my Masters my goal is to pursue medicine. My ultimate dream is to participate in a program like Doctors Without Boarders as a physician. I hope to work in a place/community that has limited access to healthcare; where there is an abundance of true need. I am also interested in potentially doing some clinical research as an M.D.; although this is something I see myself pursuing much later in my career!
I danced the Sugar Plum Fairy routine in the Nutcracker ballet, in front of a big crowd of little children and I slipped and fell in the middle of my solo. As I was falling, tutu and crown flailing, I impulsively yelled a string of very inappropriate curse words in front of the entire crowd. My Russian ballet teacher was quite upset at me.