Bioengineering: Student stories Lauren Passwater

Bioengineering is a conglomerate of biology, chemistry, math, and physics, all applied in a way that challenges you to tackle problems in the world of medicine.

Name: Lauren PasswaterLauren Passwater

What inspired you to decide to pursue your specific major?

I decided to study bioengineering simply because it follows many of my longtime interests! I enjoy learning about biology, the human body, and medicine, and I was a passionate STEM student in high school. Picking a major that combined these areas felt natural to me, even though I wasn’t sure what my future career would be. It’s hard to know your definite career path early-on, so it’s important you choose a field that nurtures the interests you already have–it will lead you in the right direction! Seeing my peers in bioengineering entering fields like medicine, law, consulting, and research reassured me that I had a wide range of future opportunities.

What has surprised you most about your major that you didn’t realize a few years ago?

I was surprised to see how teamwork-oriented it is! Even freshman year, I was always doing group projects and encouraged to work in teams. Engineering is a really collaborative field and I got to see that early-on!

How have you “used engineering” so far as a student?

So far, I’ve gotten to use engineering through Engineering Council. Even though I’m not doing anything particularly technical, I loved being the VP of Engineering Freshman Council last year and I’m excited to work with the EXPO Career Fair committee this year! EC has allowed me to broaden my network and learn so much more about the opportunities available to me. The picture (above) is of me and my friend Nicole. We went to the national conference for the National Association of Engineering Student Councils (NAESC) in Tempe, AZ over spring break. I met with representatives from engineering councils from across the country and was able to bring new information and ideas back to U of I!

What are your career goals?

When I graduate, I’m hoping to be a research scientist at a biotech or pharmaceutical company in the Boston area (my favorite place!). I plan to work for a few years in industry to solidify more specific interests before returning to graduate school to advance my career.

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