Why did you decide to apply to UCB?
I’ll be honest, Cal wasn’t my dream school but it was definitely my target school. I decided to apply when I opened the UC application. I wasn’t sure what UCs to apply to but I knew Berkeley was kind of a long shot for me. My GPA was pretty good but I remember looking at average SAT and seeing mine I was scared. My older brother that joined the marines pushed me to apply and told me that if there was anyone in our family that could go to a star school like Cal it was me. I owe it to him.
Why did you pursue MCB as your major?
Biology was always my strong suit. I knew the subject like the back of my hand. Equations made sense to Math majors, Essays came easily to English majors—but to me the cell cycle just clicked, the theory of evolution was the most interesting thing there was. The brain is hands down the coolest thing of all time and that’s why I chose the Neurobiology emphasis.
What is one piece of advice you would offer a first-year student or wish you knew yourself?
Find yourself, find your people, find your home here at Berkeley. These next four years will fly by especially when you’re out being an adult for the first time with your friends. These memories will outlast the ones you made in high school. Don’t be afraid to fail, this is where you’re supposed to learn to pick yourself up. I know everything will be overwhelming at first and that life doesn’t stop to let you breathe sometimes, but you made it here—you’re so powerful and you’re going to be okay.
What is a sentiment that keeps you motivated, or a life motto?
Make due with what you have and I promise everything will fall into place.