Biomedical research (or experimental medicine) is in general simply known as medical research. It is the basic, applied, or translational research conducted to aid and support the development body of knowledge in the field of medicine. An important kind of medical research is clinical research, which is distinguished by the involvement of patients. Other kinds of medical research include pre-clinical research, for example on animals, and basic medical research, for example in genetics.
Fields of Study
Bachelors of Arts (BA), Kinesiology/Pre-Medical Studies
Doctors of Philosophy (PhD), Cancer Biology
University of Miami – Miller School of Medicine
What inspired you to enter your profession?
For much of my childhood I wanted a career in healthcare. As so many assume, a career in healthcare meant I needed to be a doctor. My first job after college I worked in the physical therapy department of a hospital, and learned for the first time that I did not want to be a doctor. But more importantly, I learned of all the other ways I could impact people’s lives through healthcare that I never knew about. After experiencing a variety of different opportunities, I ultimately decided that a career in academic biomedical research was the best avenue for me.
Tell us about the greatest challenge you had while you were in school.
The most difficult hurdle I dealt with (and still deal with today) was being discouraged to be ambitious. Many times, I was told that maybe a class subject was too hard for me, or that maybe I should just be satisfied with being an average student. Even when it was most difficult, I always remained confident in my own ability, challenged myself and NEVER settled for mediocre results. Today, even when I meet resistance from others, I remain confident and dare to be great.
What innovations should we watch for in cancer research?
“Personalized Medicine” is the new frontier for the treatment of cancer patients. Because cancer is so different from patient to patient (even when they are diagnosed with the same type of disease), we are now developing new treatments specifically tailored to the genetic makeup of each person’s tumor. By this method, we envision a future where we will give therapies that are more effective and less toxic.
How do you give back to your community?
I look for opportunities where I can make the biggest impact possible for the amount of time spent. These include involvement with Blue1647 and its curriculum development, as well as B.I.G. Baseball Academy volunteering as a coach/pitching instructor for young athletes. I’m now excited to be take part in The Patrick Spann Foundation as a Virtual Mentor!
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