Megh Rathod

Megh RathodMegh Rathod Home Institute: McMaster university
Supervisor: Shaf Keshavjee

Hi! My name is Megh Rathod, a third year Integrated Science student, pursuing a B.Sc. in Integrated Science with a Biology Concentration at McMaster University. Born in South Africa, and eventually having moved to Brampton, ON, has given me a rich and humbling life experience. From as early as I can remember, I have always been fascinated by the wonders of the human body and its complexity on many different levels. The more I learn, the more amazed I am by what it does and how it ultimately allows us to do what we love. My passion for physiology has drawn me to pursue opportunities that can help me carve out my niche in improving healthcare. My unique undergraduate program has exposed me to many fields of research and has developed my lab skills, while stressing the importance of good scientific literacy and communication. Outside of academia, I am a captain of the Varsity Men's Rugby team at McMaster. In my free time I enjoy sports, painting, community involvement, and having a good laugh.

I am most looking forward to being immersed in the scientific community and having mentors who are passionately interested in science. I am grateful to be working under Dr. Shaf Keshavjee in the Latner Thoracic Surgery Research Lab. He is an inspiring mentor and I am looking forward to learning about his life as a scientist, especially as a physician scientist. Organ transplant research is of interest to me because of how complex and interdisciplinary it is, but also the major impact he and his team have on improving the quality of life of others. Through the program I hope to further develop my critical thinking and inquiry. I would like to become more confident with my passion for academia and medicine, and pursue further opportunities.

The Amgen Scholar Program (ASP) is the ideal opportunity for me because it offers entry into a world that I did not think I could be a part of. A scientist always seemed like a mysterious entity to me, one that I did not think was possible for me. Early on, I did not have any role models in academia, so it was difficult to see myself pursuing a career in research. However, the ASP is amazing because it pairs you up with research labs and established scientists. This really bridges the gap for me and is encouraging me to continue pursuing biomedical research. Rather than a dream, it can be a reality. The ASP allows me to participate in cutting-edge research opportunities, especially since the host institution of the University of Toronto and its partners are a hotbed for major biomedical research. Also, the collegial aspect of meeting other likeminded persons who I can learn from is fantastic. Being around exceptional students from across Canada is humbling and a great environment for us to be our nerdy selves.