Coming into Loyola I was unsure of what I wanted to study. I had always loved math and science, but I never felt the need to narrow my interests any further until I was confronted with assigning my major. I was at my freshman orientation ready to commit to physics when someone introduced me to bioinformatics. That person not only would go on to become one of my greatest friends, but also assisted me in a decision that I greatly value.
Bioinformatics seemed like the perfect field for me. I have always loved to create, and studying this discipline allowed me to work with computers and write programs and scripts, or work in the lab growing viruses and collecting sequence data. I felt as if, even as an undergraduate student, I was producing meaningful contributions to the labs research goals and further to the science community.
This discipline never seemed to bore me. Bioinformatics is such a versatile field that I was studying biology, chemistry, statistics, and computer science. But there seemed one part I greatly missed, the math. I was lucky enough to find someone who combined both bioinformatics and mathematics together and study with them. Dr. Dahari is a biological mathematician in the hepatology lab at the Maywood Medical campus. Working with him, I discovered how interconnected these two fields were and decided to pick up a mathematics major. While these two majors alone are tough, combined I feel they perfectly describe my academic interests.