April 6, 2018
Our sixth ambassador of the week for Spring 2018 is Edwood Brice!
Edwood, a pre-med student, is in the third year of his Bachelor’s Degree with Individual Concentration (BDIC) program. Appropriately entitled “Leveraging Medicine through Informatics and Data-Science,” Edward built his major around his interests and passion for medicine, informatics and data-science. “I am not preparing for medical school in a vacuum,” he contends. “The crossroad of medicine, informatics, and data-science is becoming a highly sought-after career of ‘tomorrow’s’, today, and by taking this into account, I am able to complement prospective careers in medicine and to take on different career paths that are burgeoning.”
Over the past three decades, informatics and data-science have flourished and sprouted interdisciplinary roots that provide the means for problem solving and scientific inquiry. Data-science is concerned with the extraction and utilization of data; while informatics encompasses how to use data to answer meaningful questions produced by natural phenomenon, consumers, students, and researchers alike. Edwood believes that his study offers him practical skills, knowledge and professional development pertaining to biological and technological research in these areas, and he intends to get a comprehensive understanding of the medical field, and the careers his study may offer.
Edwood plans to use the flexibility of the BDIC program to supplement his work experiences and interests across many departments and programs to build an engaging all-rounded degree. “My degree will [ultimately] support my professional endeavors during and after my undergraduate career.” To acquire relevant experiences to support this degree, and to justify his proposed study in the real-world, Edwood sought an independent research experience in Dr. Courtney Babbitt lab. The Babbitt Lab makes use of high-throughput sequencing and biological data. Edwood have had the amazing opportunity of working with Dr. Babbitt since the summer of 2016 to investigate evolutionary genomics in the context of bioinformatics. His Summer 2016 research experience was funded by the UMass STEM Ambassador Program (STEM AP).
Edwood joined STEM AP as an incoming first year student because he wanted to be part of a positive community. “In retrospect, I wouldn't have it any other way,” he explained. “STEM AP has consistently been a highlight throughout my time at UMass. Knowing that I have a support system of awesome peers across different domains of STEM is definitely my favorite part of the experience.” Outside of the realm of science, Edwood’s main interests consist of playing video games, relearning how to play the clarinet, and learning how to program in different languages. “I look forward to starting my own medically-oriented business.”
The STEM AP faculty and staff look forward to Edward’s success as a medical entrepreneur, and to continue to be a part of his professional journey. Best of wishes to you Edward!