“Why did you want to become a scientist?”
It was an innocent question – I had an innocent answer. It feels almost painful to think about it.
A few weeks ago, I had the privilege to visit St. Stephen’s School in Rome to teach 9th grade biology classes about CRISPR.
I don’t know much about CRISPR, or teaching. So I recruited the lab CRISPR guru Angelo, who was also very excited about this. Together we came up with a lesson plan, hoping to introduce the latest, coolest CRISPR applications and pique the interest of 15-year-olds. We decided on case studies to make sure that everyone was engaged; we chose cases that covered a broader spectrum of applications, from cancer immunotherapy to gene drives…
– Impact. I wanted to cure cancer.
Adhering to Asian stereotypes, my parents “asked” if I would apply to medical school. Short-sighted, I thought- doctors can save maybe a hundred lives, but if I find the cure for some deadly disease, I would be saving millions.