Everything You Need to Know About Siqi Chen and Her Love for Biology

Part I. “I am”

Name: Siqi Chen

Year: Junior

Hometown: Guangzhou, China

Majors: Molecular and Cellular Biology & Medicine, Health, and Society

Three words that describe yourself: Energetic, caring, bonding

Who or what is an inspiration in your life? My inspiration comes from listening to stories from different people.

Your international spirit has powered you to…? Be less afraid to share my thoughts, to explore new things, and to take courageous actions.

Part II. Biology

Why does biology interest you?

I am amazed by the capability of cells, tiny and yet perseverant to live through various forms of stress. Studying biology not only allows me to understand bodily functions, but also to think about life from a different perspective.

How has your biology-focused work influenced others?

With my research experiences in the Miller Lab and the RASR Lab at Vanderbilt, I have learned to anticipate errors when designing scientific experiments. With my interests in molecular genetics, I was able to inspire some students through TAing in the introductory biology lab.

Describe your involvement at the Children’s Hospital?

I have volunteered in the radiology department of the Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt. Every Thursday afternoon, I play games with kids coming into the hospital for diagnostic imaging. Occasionally, I would be honored to listen to them share their fun adventures at school.

Part III. College Life

Can you share one of your favorite events/activities at Vanderbilt?

It would be my Alternative Winter Break trip to Charleston last year in December. During the trip, I learned about the water crisis from the Water Mission, and I was intrigued to rethink the meaning of service. I really like the idea of having a life map where different people would share whatever stories they had since childhood. It not only allows me to think about my past experiences and the future, but it also connects me with peers from a different cultural backgrounds.

Why Vanderbilt?

I like that it is a small campus where I could get to know people closely. I enjoy listening to stories and learning from the past. Vandy has many great history classes where I could just sit in and enjoy. It is a place where I can find my internal peace.

What is one suggestion you have for female college students?

Be confident in your talents and give anything that interests you a try.

What are two tips you have for international students?

  1. Do not be afraid to stand out because of your cultural backgrounds. There are people who are interested in you and your stories.
  2. Explore different things, sleep more, and exercise more.

Can you recommend three things to do in Nashville?

Go for a walk in Cheekwood on a sunny day, listen to country music on the streets of the Gulch, and bring some friends to stay in the Smoky Mountains for a week or two without any concerns about anything.

Is there anything else you want to add?

Smile.