The Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship has changed my life and my future career plans. At the beginning of the fellowship, I thought I was going to apply to Medical-Scientist Training Programs because I liked research and wanted to make a difference in a clinical setting. With further seeking, I found great mentors to help me make the decision to only apply to Medical Schools. This was such a difficult decision to make since I have been working in a lab since I started at Michigan. The best piece of advice I received was to do what I love; to be honest, I loved working in the lab during the summer (for about 8 hours a day) but doing this for the rest of my life would kill me. I love talking to people and learning about their lives so working towards research results instead of working towards a diagnosis would not be the best use of my time.
At the end of my fellowship, the fellows were asked to present their research to the rest of the department. Obviously, I was excited and nervous but I found something that I loved doing during the experience; teaching others about my research (biology/biochemistry)! In fact, one of the fellows told me that they really learned a lot from my presentation which I took as a huge compliment. I am now planning on pursing my M.D. with intentions of practicing internal medicine and then later pursing a Ph.D. to teach. I could not be more excited about my future career and this fellowship has made me realize my passion to join medical academia.