Year 1 in the MCP Program at UCI: Noora Siddiqui
First year PhD student Noora Siddiqui shares her experience in the Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacology program at UCI so far.
Why did you decide to go to UCI for grad school?
I loved the program, I was excited about the research, and I truly appreciated the vibrant campus community!
Which labs have you rotated through so far?
My first rotation was with Dr. David Mobley’s group where I had the opportunity to learn about computational methods as they relate to the drug discovery process. It was absolutely fascinating and I feel like I learned a lot just through my mini-rotation project and through the help of all of the group members.
My current rotation is with Dr. Trina Norden-Krichmar in the School of Medicine where I’m using approaches in bioinformatics to understand how underlying variation in gene expression can give rise to differences in drug response. Both experiences have been really enriching and I credit the whole rotation aspect of our program for helping me discover the type of research I’d love to do for the rest of my career!
What do you like about the MCP program?
The people. I’m really grateful to be surrounded by so many talented individuals – from my advisors and mentors, to all of my classmates and friends – I admire them all and genuinely appreciate the positive impact they have on my daily development.
What do you hope to do after you obtain your degree?
There are so many unique career opportunities for scientists in industry, academia, business, government, and beyond! Wherever I end up after graduate school, I hope that I will continue to engage in the types of science communication and science education efforts that have been a large part of my life for years.
What should prospective students consider when choosing a grad school program?
Graduate school is a challenge – before selecting a program, ask yourself, “Is this someplace I can survive, or someplace I will thrive?” and have the courage to build your life around the answer.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
Success is built upon failure. It takes effort to keep going, but to paraphrase and rephrase the words of Teddy Roosevelt: It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the woman who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; and, who at the worst, if she fails, at least fails while daring greatly.
CLICK HERE to learn more about the MCP program at UCI