Some students seek a “Goldilocks” school that is the perfect size for them, one not so big that they become a faceless number on campus, but also one not so small that they feel
pigeonholed. Rising senior Monali Patel found her “just right” fit at Monmouth University.
“I chose Monmouth University because I wanted to attend a school that had small enough class sizes where I could form meaningful academic relationships with my professors, but not too small that I would repeatedly see the same people on campus,” Monali said. “Monmouth was the happy medium I was looking for in terms of size.
“Additionally, I was looking for a
school that would provide the opportunity for me to participate in undergraduate research. Because I want to attend medical school after my time at Monmouth, this experience would be very important to me, and like many of my peers, I have been fortunate enough to work on biology research since my sophomore year. Finally, Monmouth was a tempting choice for me because of the location of the University. I love that I can walk to the beach or take a shuttle to Pier Village whenever I want.
“After my graduating from Monmouth, I plan on attending medical school. While I do not know exactly what specialty I would like to pursue, neurology and cardiology are both fields that interest me. It is my hope to practice medicine either in a hospital or private practice setting once I obtain my medical degree; however, I have always imagined myself teaching as well, so essentially the possibilities are endless.”
Peer mentoring, Circle K Club, Phi Eta Sigma, Beta Beta Beta, Alpha Epsilon Delta, tutoring
Faculty Member Influence
“For me, it's hard to pick just one faculty member who has influenced me at Monmouth. I truly believe that all of the School of Science faculty members are extraordinary because they are willing to go the extra mile to help out their students.
“Dr. Bernadette Dunphy and Dr. Dorothy Lobo, who are the co-directors of the Pre-Professional Health Advisory Committee, have definitely both been positive influences on my professional endeavors by helping me expand my health care experiences and preparing me for medical school.
“Additionally, Dean Catherine Duckett and Dr. Robin Kucharczyk have helped me with my professional development and networking skills as a School of Science Peer Mentor.”
How Monmouth helped me achieve my goals
“Getting involved on campus and the classroom environment gave me the confidence I needed to achieve my goals,” Monali said. “With the small class sizes, the faculty and staff were able to develop direct relationships with students and for this reason I never felt that I was alone when making big academic and career decisions. Furthermore, the resources on campus, such as the tutoring and writing centers, create encouraging environments that help students realize their potentials.”
Organizations that helped me as a student
“The greatest thing about going to college is being able to explore your interests and find your niche,” Monali said. “At Monmouth there are so many different clubs and organizations that you'll definitely find something to be a part of. In my case, I felt that getting involved in the Circle K Club, the Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, Beta Beta Beta - the Biology Honor Society, and Alpha Epsilon Delta - the Premedical Honor Society have really helped paved the path to success. Additionally, as an Honors School Peer Mentor, a School of Science Peer Mentor, and a tutor I was really able to get involved on campus."
Collaborations that I've been involved with
“I believe my research experiences at Monmouth fostered some of the most useful skills I obtained. I will be able to directly apply these skills to my future career in medicine,” Monali said. “In particular, I thoroughly enjoyed learning through experimentation because it allowed me to implement the concepts and biological processes I learned in my classes with a more hands-on
“My research with Dr. Lobo was focused on cancer cells and the proteins that control their survival and metastasis. This research could lead to new insight on the regulation of proteins during cancer and have implications for chronic inflammatory diseases, cardiovascular disease, and aging.”
Why I'm proud of Monmouth
“The community at Monmouth University is extremely supportive. During my time at the university, I have been able to develop strong relationships with my professors who are genuinely interested in my success and development,” Monali said. “This support has helped me grow not only as a student, but also as an individual and I believe this has better prepared me for a life outside of college.”
My favorite Monmouth memory
“During my sophomore year I was doing undergraduate biology research with Dr. Lobo and I was fortunate enough to be able to travel to San Francisco with my research team so one of our team members could present her research at the American Society for Cell Biology Conference,” Monali said.