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(Class of '10) Sofia Essayan Perez - Young Alumna Spotlight 2012

Upon graduating from The Study in June of 2011, Sofia Essayan-Perez began preparing for the next step in her academic career. Rather than a local CEGEP, however, Sofia instead chose to apply to 11 leading universities, gaining acceptance in every single one. She ultimately chose to major in Brain and Cognitive Science, with a focus on Neurobiology, at MIT (The Massachusetts Institute of Technology).

In February 2012, Sofia shared her thoughts on her Study experience as well as her experiences at MIT since graduation:

What aspect of your Study experience most helped you prepare for MIT?
At MIT, you must have the resourcefulness to ask questions and work to understand the material, rather than just memorize it. Seeking teachers, researching course material, and working with peers are important skills I learned at The Study.

How important is it for The Study to prepare students with a strong leadership skill set?
It is essential, since leaders are not created overnight; rather, it occurs in stages as they accept new challenges. At The Study, we were given multiple opportunities to become involved and expand our ideas and interests. By engaging in leadership development, you gain experience that helps orient you as you decide on your future career.

Why did you choose your current academic path, rather than CEGEP?
Attending university after high school offered me immediate access to a top-level program in neuroscience, which is my field of interest. In addition, my university has a unique emphasis on undergraduate research, where professors from all fields encourage students to become very involved in laboratory research activities. This kind of opportunity for first-year students is rare, especially in high-level investigations. In addition, I wanted the challenge of being immersed in a rigorous math and science environment, and meeting students and faculty from all over the world. It was an opportunity I did not want to miss.

Education

  • Current Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Neurobiology)