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Sepeedeh Niknam // emergency medicine scribe and community tutor // class of 2013

A well-balanced life is a thing of beauty, and Sepeedeh Niknam (B.S. Genetics, Cell Biology and Development) is committed to fully embracing a life that combines both practical problem-solving and higher purpose.

Since graduation, she’s been working as an emergency medicine scribe at the Emergency Physicians Professional Association, noting that the position is a pivotal stepping-stone toward a dream of practicing medicine. “On the weekends, I tutor East African Indian children, allowing me to further integrate within my community and learn of inherent differences in socio-cultural beliefs,” she says.

“My short-term career goals are to successfully complete my medical education while engaging in clinical research and volunteer opportunities,” she says. “In particular, I’d like to conduct public health research on potential barriers to culturally competent healthcare. I hope that someday I can help to bridge the cultural gap between Muslim women and western medicine.”

Niknam mentions the Dean's Scholars program as one of her most important influences. “I learned the significance of reflection, and how it allows you to link your performance to your potential,” she says. She also mentions the Mayo Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship, during which she was mentored by Dr. Andrew Limper from the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Pulmonary Division. “I conducted real-time laboratory research and actively expanded my background in medical sciences,” she says. “The use of these concepts and my involvement in research honed my creative problem-solving skills. I revel in any problem solving that satisfies the fundamental needs of others.”