Undergraduate Student Panel
Benta Cheng is a fourth year student at SFU pursuing a Health Sciences undergraduate degree in the Population and Quantitative Stream. In her spare time, Benta enjoys volunteering for a number of humanitarian and student groups such as EMBARK Sustainability, UNICEF SFU, The Canadian Red Cross, and SFU Design Lab. Her engagements in a number of diverse and challenging endeavours have helped to shape her passion for health promotion and team work, and continuously forward her goal to become a great leader. After dipping her toes in the realm of programming and hackathons through her involvement as the Outreach Director for Lumohacks’s first Cancer Hackathon, she cultivated a love for bioinformatics and data science. Benta currently works as a Systems Designer and Analyst for Provincial Health Services Authority and is looking to pursue a Graduate Degree in a field pertaining to epidemiology, bioinformatics, and data integrity in the near future.
Nancy Lum is in her final year of study at SFU as a Biomedical Physiology major. Nancy is a recipient of the 2014 Schulich Leader Scholarship, which recognizes students for their academic excellence and commitment to community leadership. When she is not in the laboratory probing the gene expression profiles of induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes, she can be found at BC Children's Hospital engaging with pediatric oncology patients, supporting people undergoing distress at the Crisis Centre, or teaching first aid to ESL immigrants and refugees as a volunteer at the Canadian Red Cross. One day, Nancy hopes to join the medical profession as a pediatrician and mental health advocate.
Chin-Vern Tan is a 3rd year student at UBC in the Faculty of Science, specializing in Genetics and Physiology, and is currently an undergraduate research assistant at the Naus Lab. Her research is focused on the role of channels that allow cells to communicate, known as gap junctions, in acute stroke models.
Christian Schlappner is a 2nd year Behavioural Neuroscience student at UBC. He is a member of the SCI-Team Peer Program, a volunteer research assistant under Dr. Frances Chen, working on various projects related to Social Health and Psychology, and the recipient of the University of Toronto National Book Award.
Christian aims for a career in medicine in pediatrics or psychiatry in order to make a difference in other’s lives. lala
Jasia is a second year student at UBC, majoring in Immunology and Genetics. She is involved in UBC Orientations, volunteers at a UBC microbiology lab and BC Children’s Hospital and is the volunteer co-director for UBC’s Multidisciplinary Undergraduate Research Conference. In her spare time, she enjoys watching musicals and wishing she had a cat. She hopes to enter UBC’s Faculty of Medicine in pursuit of becoming a doctor.
Gillian is currently in second year studying Microbiology and Immunology at UBC. She volunteers at a research lab with the BC Cancer Agency. After she graduates, she plans to get involved in research and go to Graduate school. A fun fact about her is that she plays Quidditch for UBC.
Jerry is currently a fourth year Behavioural Neuroscience student at UBC. He enjoys eating, sleeping, and believes walking is rigorous cardio. He’s going to be graduating this May, with research assistantships with behavioural and cognitive neuroscience – both locally and internationally, leadership, and charity work.
Joseph Ho is a third year undergraduate student studying biochemistry and molecular biology at the University of British Columbia. He has developed a strong passion in this field and in the future he aspires to do research in either pharmaceutical chemistry or molecular medicine. Joseph pursues his interest in science as a USRA recipient for the materials science research institute 4D Labs, investigating organic and Nano-materials. Prior to being a part of 4D Labs, Joseph was a research assistant in an infectious diseases virology laboratory, focusing on an herpesvirus known as Marek's disease virus.
While pursuing his passion in the sciences, Joseph also finds time to give back to the community. He served as a recruitment executive for SFU Dance Marathon to raise money for BC Children’s hospital. He also volunteered weekly at his local senior home and the Surrey Memorial Hospital. Joseph is excited to be a part of the University Panel and looks forward to sharing his experiences as an undergraduate student.
Athena is a 3rd year student at the University of British Columbia majoring in Pharmacology and minoring in Psychology. She has been interested in the health sciences since a young age, with aspirations to work in the medical field when she graduates. This resolution stems from a desire to learn about how the human body and mind works, what can go wrong, and how we can fix it. Outside of school, she is heavily involved with the Student Environment Centre, the Orientation Leaders program, and Spoon University (a food-centred publication for university students). In the past, she was a Professional Panel Director and then VP Events for PPV. She also volunteers in a life sciences research lab studying the male reproductive system, and she has worked at the BC Cancer Research Centre for the past 2 summers in ovarian cancer research. Feel free to ask her about science programs at UBC and how to get involved!
Valeriya Zaborska has recently completed her Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Physiology at Simon Fraser University. She aspires to one day become a specialist in Internal Medicine, and is currently participating in the interview process for multiple Canadian medical schools. She currently works as a Research Assistant at the Aging and Population Health Lab at SFU, where she assists with data management on a clinical trial for Compliant “Safety” Flooring at a Long-Term Care facility. She is also working as a Medical Office Assistant at the LAIR Centre. Throughout her undergraduate career, Valeriya was heavily involved with Phi Delta Epsilon, an International Medical Fraternity, where she has recently served as Vice President of Recruitment. She also worked as a fundraiser with the Canadian Liver Foundation for 2 years, and ran an SFU club for the same cause. Valeriya is currently enjoying volunteering at a local elementary school, where she tutors students in math and reading. Her hobbies include participating in various types of dance, including traditional Persian dance, as well playing soccer in a recreational league.
Sophie Bruneau is a first year science student at the University of British Columbia, hoping to major in Cellular, Anatomical and Physiological sciences. She’s also a Major Entrance Scholarship recipient. In high school, Sophie took pride in grasping leadership opportunities, like getting involved with the high school business conference miniEnterprize as chair, with the non-profit organisation Kindlers Society as VP, and with leading her high school club Project HELLO. She also spent a month in the Philippines as a medical outreach worker in a post-typhoon disaster area, where she travelled to rural areas that rarely received medical attention, and tested patients for diabetes, high cholesterol levels, performed immunizations, and tested blood for diseases like Typhoid fever or Polio. Now, Sophie is a member of Alpha Gamma Delta at UBC sororities, and is the leader of her class. She is incredibly excited to answer any questions that incoming first years or aspiring high school students may have, and hopefully inspire students to pursue science as a degree.
Donyanaz Divsalar is a third-year SFU student, majoring in Health Sciences, who is also a former Medical student at Medical University of Debrecen, Hungary. She illustrates her passion for the health care field through a combination of philanthropic and leadership services. She is passionate about following a career as a cardiologist, and joining the Doctors Without Borders organization. She is currently involved in several activities, such as being the Vice President of Programming in Phi Delta Epsilon International Medical Fraternity, an active health care provider working with St. John Ambulance, and volunteering at Eagle Ridge Hospital. She is also an executive member of SFU Blood For Life, and is one of the Co-founders of Music For The Hearts non-profit organization.
Donyanaz writes short stories during her free time, practices ballet choreography, and plays tennis as a member of SFU’s Tennis club.
Tyler Lum is a first year UBC student in the Faculty of Applied Science. Tyler is a recipient of UBC’s Major Entrance Scholarship, which recognizes students who demonstrate academic promise and leadership achievements in community and athletics. He is passionate about designing creative solutions to problems, and bringing them to reality. As a design team member of UBC Thunderbots, Tyler designs and builds autonomous soccer-playing robots. Tyler was the Co-Chairperson of Karing4Kids club, where he lead a team to fundraise for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. He is also an advocate for mental health, and founded a Mental Health Awareness club at his high school to stop the stigma surrounding mental illness. In his free time, Tyler enjoys playing volleyball and ultimate frisbee. Tyler is interested in biomedical engineering, and hopes to innovate the field to advance the medical technology.