Erick Mejia Age: 26 Years Career: Biological Engineering Graduation Date: June 2020
What motivated you to go to university?
I really like biological sciences and areas that are not common in people's everyday life, like molecular biology, immunology, and microbiology.
Why did you choose your career?
Engineering represents a strict challenge and it presents itself like a tool of solutions for everyday problems. Not only in the area of solving problems but also in learning all the background details, the why and the how.
When did you become an IAMCBOB Scholar?
I started in 2011.
How does the IAMCBOB scholarship help you?
Until now it has helped me to maintain my expenses on a monthly basis. It has helped me with 75% of my university financial necessities, including tuition every semester and monthly expenses.
What are your plans after graduation?
My plans are to enroll in any entity where I can implement informatic tools coupled with genetics to study bioinformatics, if it’s not possible I would also like to do biochemical analysis or in areas that align with my interests. I also really like the educational field and I would enjoy being a professor.
What is your ideal job?
My ideal job varies in whatever field in which I can learn about the things that surround me and work hard to maintain the ecosystems alive without harmful interference. I would work pro-conservation, I would teach everything I can to contribute to human growth and I would add a lot of research because I like knowing the reason for everything.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I see myself as a teacher, most likely in a small cold town surrounded by mountains, moving often to leave behind consumer habits and live more united by what makes a person feel more alive physically and mentally.
Tell us your story.
I arrived in Medellín when I was seven years old under very precarious conditions. My father kept us alive by collecting leftover food that big companies would discard, such as “La Minorista.” With time, he found a job and we lived a stable life while I completed my bachelor’s degree. I learned how to work and how to appreciate any type of labor that would keep me mentally engaged. By these means I was able to buy my own supplies for school. I worked very hard to fulfill all of my academic responsibilities and was able to attend a good university to start my career in biological engineering at the age of sixteen. Thus far I have endured many turns, ups and downs and difficulties, yet I have maintained the ability to stay on track. Now, I can finally say that I will be an engineer!
Who do you admire?
I don't really have a person who I truly admire, I have never felt like I related to that way of thinking. I take a lot of things from a lot of people, like things that I want to be able to do or have, but in general, I admire musicians because they represent almost everything in my personal journey.