Name: Gordon Ng
Major: Biological Sciences
What got you interested in your major?
I took a general education course, SAS 20 – Genetics and Society, in my freshman year and that triggered my interest in the sciences. From there on I took more science classes and developed a curiosity for molecular biology and how the human body functions.
Why did you decide on this major instead of any other?
The biological sciences major offers a broad overview of many topics in biology such as evolution, physiology, plant sciences, cell biology, biochemistry, so I feel that I get an overall picture of what biology really is about. Additionally, the major allows students to specialize in a specific area of biology, preparing them to be a more competent biologist in their endeavors beyond UC Davis undergraduate study.
Are you involved in any activities or internships? How did you get involved?
Currently, I am an academic peer advisor for the College of Biological Sciences. I am also the co-president for the Pre-Pharmacy Club. I have also been a naturalist intern with the arboretum for a year now, leading tours of the plants in the arboretum for elementary school children. In the past I have done internships through the Internship and Career Center with Rite Aid Pharmacy, and the UC Davis Medical Center. I also play intramural sports when I have time.
I got involved with my activities on campus for many reasons. For instance, I chose to do internships to further explore my career options in the health professions. I took on the position of academic peer advisor and co-president of a club to enhance my leadership abilities. My love for children led me to the arboretum naturalist position, and I do intramural sports to compete and have fun! All of the activities I found and became involved in were from being proactive and exploring campus resources.
Why did you choose to come to UC Davis?
I liked UC Davis because of its small-community atmosphere. You walk around campus and it’s very serene and calm; trees, grass, creeks.
It’s also very convenient to downtown where a wide array of dining choices are available. It’s also close to my hometown and I felt confident about the quality of the education that I would be receiving.
What are you planning on doing after graduation? Are you thinking about graduate school? If you are, what are your top choices and why?
After graduation this June, I will have two months of a summer to relax and travel a little. Then in late August I will be attending University of the Pacific to pursue my [doctorate in pharmacy]. I chose this school because it’s a year-round program that allows me to finish in three years instead of the traditional four years. This way, it’s time and cost efficient, and I can start working and making money a year earlier than other graduates.
What kind of career are you hoping pursue with your major?
My major has allowed me to successfully gain admission into pharmacy school. From here, I plan on pursuing a career as a clinical pharmacist so that I can specialize in a specific field of pharmacy such as pediatrics or chronic disease management, and allow me to work in a more intimate setting with patients and other health professionals. From my encounters, the biggest public misconception about pharmacists is that they are simply “pill-pushers.” They’re not. Get to know your pharmacist!
Any favorite classes or teachers you could recommend to other students in the Biological Sciences major?
Within the Biological Sciences major, my favorite classes were NPB 101,
BIS 103, and MIC 102. I also enjoyed the CHE 118 series. Dr. Mann for MIC 102 had very entertaining lectures. These classes are tough, but will be good preparation for graduate [or] professional schools.
Any advice for incoming first-year students who are considering taking up the biological sciences major?
Be prepared to work hard. Last-minute studying doesn’t work like it did in high school! The major is competitive, but if science is what you really enjoy, then the intense classes, long labs and endless hours of studying will be worth it in the end.
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