May GDB Alumni Spotlight: Ellen Osborn

Ellen Osborn

Hi! My name is Ellen and I am a part of GDB's 2018 graduating class. One of my first classes at UC Davis as a transfer student was BIS 101, and I quickly got sucked into the world of genetics, a field of study I previously had zero interest in. Though I was a pre-med student, I chose to do my practicum on plant population genetics because I found an amazing mentor and lab group, which made all the difference when it came to starting out in research. To get more experience before making the decision between PhD and MD programs, I started on an MS in genetics at UC Davis right after graduating, where I am currently researching the genetics of a human neurodegenerative disease. I work as a teaching assistant for funding and take classes on the side while working on my research project, and I am looking to apply to MD/PhD programs next year. The MS degree has afforded me time to develop my interests, research and otherwise, and the experience has been invaluable when considering future career paths. If I had any advice to give, it would be to take the time you need, and be kind to yourself if you don't adhere to the typical timetable!