Miss Maheetha Bharadwaj (2016)
Passionate about delivering quality health care to all, I came to Stanford with the intention of taking up a career in health care . Pursuing a bachelor’s in biology, a master’s in biomedical informatics, and genomics research equipped me adequately to understand the role of genome mutations in disease processes. At the McDonnell Genome Institute at Washington University, I searched sequencing and expression data for patterns in tumor suppressors and oncogenes that caused cancer. At Stanford, I studied translational allelic-specific expression in human lymphoblastoid cells. The complexity of our genome fascinated me, and I garnered a desire to understand ways in which genome could be modified disease processes. With increasing availability of sequencing data, it is important to gain the skills to analyze and interpret this data meaningfully for a future of genetics-driven, preventative, personalized medicine. Thus at Cambridge, I will pursue a Masters of Philosophy in Genomic Medicine exploring ways to incorporate sequencing data and technologies directly into patient care delivery. After Cambridge, I plan to do an MD/Ph.D, which will enable me to deliver health care in innovative ways to my local community and bring personalized medicine to bedside globally. Outside academics, I am the founder of Stanford Music and Medicine, an organization that recruits Stanford students to use music as a form of therapy for nursing home residents. I also work for a non-profit that develops arts-based science supplemental lesson plans for middle school students in East Palo Alto. In my free time, I love singing in the shower, hiking, and horror films.