TGen Blog : Aparna Krishnan: 2018 TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy
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Aparna Krishnan: 2018 TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy

Aparna Krishnan, a rising junior at BASIS Scottsdale, reflects on the fun and friends she found at her summer program.

Picture this: You walk into a room filled with 19 insanely intelligent teenagers; some have published their own novels, and one girl plans to dedicate her entire career to improving medical care in third world countries. That is what I walked into on the first day of the TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy (BLA).

My name is Aparna, and I am an alumna of the 2018 BLA program. Being an alumna of this program holds a lot of significance to me. Over the span of just two weeks, I grew exponentially as both a leader and a scientist. BLA exposed me to an array (no, not a microarray) of topics, from the ins and outs of translational mass spectrometry and proteomics to the complexities of clinical trials.

But, beyond the science, the most refreshing part of this program was the people I met. Listening to a mother’s story about working with TGen’s Center for Rare Childhood Disorders to find an answer for her daughter’s condition was an extremely moving opportunity that I did not take for granted. Working closely with not only the outstanding mentors, scientists, and community leaders at TGen, but also my unbelievably inspiring classmates, allowed me to build connections and friendships for a lifetime. And, to give you a better idea of the tight-knit community that the BLA fosters, the class of 2018 became so close during the two weeks that we started planning alumni events with our mentors, Julie and Heather, well before the program was over.

My experience in the TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy was life-changing. I want to thank the Helios Education Foundation for funding this program and allowing students like myself to explore the biosciences at such a young age and at an incredible research institute like TGen.

Learn more about TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy at


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