Trishya Srinivasan

Pre-Health Specialized Studies ‘18


Pre-Health Post-Baccalaureate Programs, University of Pennsylvania ‘18
Bachelor of Arts in Biology, University of Pennsylvania ‘15

“Finding little ways to appreciate what you’re doing, and the opportunities in front of you each day can help you get through the challenges of preparing for medical school,” advises Trishya Srinivasan (Pre-Health Specialized Studies ‘18). She joined the University of Pennsylvania’s Pre-Health Post-Baccalaureate Programs after taking a year to explore a career in healthcare management. “I worked for DaVita, a kidney care company, as an internal consultant. A lot of the projects I worked on were clinic-facing, and I realized that I wanted to be part of a care provider team. I knew I needed to go back to school, and Penn was the only one for me.”

Trishya first studied biology and healthcare management as an undergraduate at Penn. The Specialized Studies Program helped her further prepare academically and personally for the medical school journey. “My perspective has changed since undergrad—there’s a bigger picture in front of me. The material I study is going to benefit a patient one day. It makes all the difference in the world to learn it well, thoroughly and with passion,” she shares.

Throughout her time in the Pre-Health Programs, Trishya connected with her professors and advisors to make the most of her experience. “All of the instructors are passionate about what they teach, and they want to disseminate their knowledge to students,” she adds, “Dr. Lisa Witmer is a champion for all students in this program. I had her as an undergrad, and in the Specialized Studies Program I took her Advanced Cell Biology course and was a teaching assistant (TA) for two of her other courses. It’s been wonderful to see how our relationship has developed over the years.”

Adding to her support network, Trishya is involved with the Penn Future Women in Health student group and has a close-knit team of study partners that she met in her first semester. “Initially, I was scared,” she remembers, “But I quickly found a very supportive community in the Pre-Health Programs. I feel at home here. I met likeminded people who want to succeed and see me succeed. I am very grateful for that.”

With her courses winding down, Trishya took an opportunity as a clinical research assistant with Penn Medicine’s Palliative and Advanced Illness Research Center (PAIR). “The mission of the organization is to find the intersection where we can provide terminally ill patients the highest quality of care and the greatest longevity for lifespan,” she adds. “I am applying a lot of what I learned in my classroom and extracurricular experiences at the PAIR Center. As a TA, I first understood the importance of listening for the sake of listening. As a physician and researcher, it is such a critical skill when interacting with patients.”

Looking ahead, Trishya is taking a holistic approach to her medical school applications. “The courses in the Specialized Studies Program helped me do very well on the MCAT. I value supportive environments, having advisors who want me to thrive and institutions that provide opportunities to serve those who need it the most—and that’s what I am looking for in a medical school.” For her area of concentration, Trishya is going in with an open mind, “I would love to see where my strengths lie, how I can best benefit patients and what I find most fulfilling.”

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