My time in high school
Attended high school in the
Overall high school experience
9/10. I loved high school. I had a wonderful friend group, maintained good grades, and had a loving boyfriend whom I ended up marrying. The only reason why I detract one point is because I often experienced periods of unhappiness due to the extremely high and stressful academic expectations my parents placed upon me. However, since most of my friend group was high-achieving with similarly-minded parents, school was ironically a nice escape and a way to commiserate and destress amongst friends.
Grades in high school
A's and B's. Mostly A's with a handful of B's.
English, History / Social Studies, Foreign Language, Science, Music (orchestra)
I struggled with math the most.
Life since high school
Attended college / university at
I attended Wellesley College and majored in Biology. I cherish the time that I spent at Wellesley; I think of my four years there as the time when I really grew into myself and found out who I was and wanted to be. I was surrounded by role models and strong women who inspired me on a day-to-day basis. I often felt great peace and comfort in the natural beauty that surrounded the college. I loved academic life there and felt so supported and uplifted by the Wellesley community (and I still do).
Post-graduate education or training
After Wellesley, I attended veterinary school at Tufts University. I'd planned on becoming a vet for as long as I can remember, and I am so happy that my life stayed exactly on track. I'm currently in a veterinary residency to specialize in laboratory animal medicine. I love working in research and advocating for animal welfare while supporting science. I never take for granted the way things turned out for me.
Places lived in US
Current occupations / past occupations
Veterinary resident in laboratory animal medicine.
Industries I've worked in
- Health Care and Social Assistance
- Veterinary Medecine
Did your education prepare you for your career or occupation?
Yes! I'd always dreamed of becoming a veterinarian ever since I was small. I was very single-minded during high school and college: my goal was vet school. Most everything I did was for vet school - getting good grades in high school and college, getting veterinary and animal experience during college, majoring in the sciences, etc. My story is a bit unexciting as I accomplished exactly what I set out to do, but I couldn't be happier that it turned out this way.
Has your education or career/occupation trajectory ever changed? How?
I was set on wildlife medicine when I entered veterinary school, but when I discovered that this branch of vet med can be difficult to break into, I explored laboratory animal medicine as a possible career choice and found that it was right for me. I love the diversity of species I work with on a daily basis, and I value the opportunity to be a voice for research animals while simultaneously being a part of the research community and being surrounded by science.
A little introspection...
To me, being successful means...
Feeling fulfilled in a major aspect of your life, whether it is in the context of family, career, spirituality, etc. Pursuing interests. Having interests. Feeling happy with yourself and the person you are. Feeling content and at peace. Being financially comfortable and emotionally stable.
My definition of success has not changed over time.
My definition of success really hasn't changed much over time. In high school, I may have also included more age-appropriate things like getting good grades or making my parents happy, but I always knew success was a big-picture rather than snapshot thing. I think I was always aware that true success was more of an intrinsic rather than extrinsic accomplishment.
My greatest accomplishment to date and what I’ve learned from it
I believe I continue to accomplish great things day by day. Certainly, graduating from veterinary school with my proud husband by my side was one of the happiest days of my life and a significant accomplishment and milestone. But sometimes, getting through the day is just as much of an accomplishment. Accepting daily challenges can be tough for me, so the moments when I have met and overcome them with grace and strength are just as encouraging as having won any award or medal.
My biggest mistake or regret so far and what I’ve learned from it
I don't have many regrets; I look back on my life with contentment and a glad heart.
An unexpected event that significantly changed my life and how it impacted me
Leaving California to attend school on the east coast was something that changed my life for the better. Before my senior year, the thought of leaving my parents was paralyzing and fear-inducing; however, I'm so grateful to have been able to experience life outside of California. I've been away from my home state for about 10 years now; while I miss it dearly and aim to return someday to settle down, I love New England and feel so much joy when I think of the great life I've made for myself here.
Anything else you'd like to share?
I ended up marrying my high school sweetheart (we've been together since my sophomore year), and he has been my partner in crime, my pal, my buddy, my great love, support, and endurer of all things through life. When I think of Palo Alto, he is naturally included in most memories of that great city.
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My favorite spot in or around Palo Alto
Gunn High School