Since I graduated from Columbia in 1996, I've dedicated my life to not-for-profit pursuits across two very different career paths- Biomedicine and Law. With my education and experience, I had the option of pursuing very lucrative careers with Biotechnology or Pharmaceutical companies, but instead chose to go into academics to do research for research's sake. Although important to a degree, money has never been the driving force for the decisions I've made. My choices have been guided more by doing what I like to do, and in academics, there was no corporate pressure to drive results as quick as possible for the sake of making huge profits. I respected that in my peers and was content with doing my part to help society's understanding of those scientific principles we were working on elucidating further. But in 2003, something happened that changed the course of my life. I experienced an injustice and was set in a new direction in order to fight that injustice. That's when my legal career began. Through this personal legal battle, I came to fully understand what it means when people say that it's only through suffering and disappointment that one's perspective on life changes, and one comes to understand what's truly important. After I graduated from law school, I chose to dedicate my career to public service by providing legal representation to indigent individuals charged with crimes in order to protect and defend their Constitutional rights. In that capacity, I was able to practice law for the sake of practicing law, without due regard to how much profit I was generating. But again, my eyes were opened to how much political corruption and abuse of power permeates our entire society, even in places one would not expect to find it. It's through this experience that I have come to know exactly what my calling is and where my talents can be the most useful. My passion is in fighting for the disadvantaged and abused against seemingly insurmountable odds.