Year of Study: Year 3
Student’s Name: Nicole Machado
Undergraduate Department: Pharmacology and Toxicology
Country of Residence: Richmondhill, Ontario , Canada
Why Faculty of Medicine?
When I first entered university I was not sure which stream within Life Sciences I wanted to specialize in, but I did know that I wanted to study in a field that reflected my passion for health care and the science and innovation behind it. The Faculty of Medicine is the perfect place for this as it provides a great selection of 8 very specialized fields for students to learn about the research that has founded our current knowledge of health and disease. Through unique courses, labs, research awards, internships, seminars, and more, the Faculty of Medicine provides students with many different opportunities to shape their learning. I enjoy the challenge and choice this Faculty offers to students seeking an integrated educational experience.
Why this Department?
My time volunteering in a pharmacy and hospital, has helped me develop a great interest in the function and effects of drugs and chemicals to the human body. I really appreciated how studies in Pharmacology and Toxicology can provide a link between molecular research and therapeutic care. It integrates many different fields of biomedical research and applies them in a clinical setting. Additionally, I chose the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology for their Professional Experience Year (PEY) program and research project requirements. I was looking for an opportunity to explore different career pathways before the end of my degree and this department provides students with a lot of support in achieving that.
Current Research Experience
I am currently holding a work-study position in Dr. Leonardo Salmena's lab in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology. I am assisting on a project that investigates the novel oncogenic role Inositol Polyphosphate-4-Phosphatase (INPP4B) plays in acute myeloid leukemia. I was fortunate to have many great mentors this summer who have taught me how to critically analyse research, conduct various lab procedures, and appropriately troubleshoot experiments. I am very excited for the opportunity to return to Dr. Salmena's lab this fall to continue working on this project.
Future Education Plans and/or Career Goals
I am currently trying to gain as much knowledge as I can about possible career paths within my field of studies through volunteer, research, and work experiences. I want to make a well informed decision about what path maybe right for me. I am currently looking towards entering the pharmaceutical industry after my undergraduate degree. I am also considering returning to school for graduate studies. Although ,it is still unclear to me in which order the two may occur.