Blogs

How I became an engineer overnight

From basic science to medical engineering

Nov 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
Applying to graduate school is a nerve-wracking process. It’s a blanket of excitement that, when uncovered, reveals a flood of conflicting emotions--from wondering whether you are rushing and have no experience and should work for a few years to questioning your self-worth and doubting if you have...

When Your Hobby Is Your YouTube Channel

Balancing research, classes, and content creation

Oct 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
It was two months before I was set to move to Boston for my PhD, and I had decided that there would never be a better time to create a science YouTube channel. While it might seem like a crazy idea to take on such a huge commitment while doing a PhD, I strongly believe that this unusual hobby has...

The Paradox of Choice:

Too many flavors at the ice cream store

Nov 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
I am a brand-new Ph.D. student and I have already figured out my least favorite part about MIT: the overwhelming number of choices. As I am enrolled as a student in the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology Medical Engineering Ph.D. program, the situation is even more intense. I can take...

Full Send

Running stadiums is fun, right?

Nov 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
What if I told you that the most fun thing that I do regularly since moving to Boston is running up and down a lot of tall steps (technically, seats) a lot of times, twice a week? Would you think that I’m crazy? A masochist? That Guy™ at the party who won’t shut up about how great running stadiums...

Making the most of Cambridge's amazing salsa scene

Plus a story of how I went from ballet to salsa

Oct 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
Thankfully, life at MIT as a grad student is not ALL about research. For me, one of the greatest breaks from lab is dancing. Growing up, classical ballet was part of my daily routine. Classical ballet requires physical resilience, a focused mind, and musicality, but above all, it requires...

Starting Graduate School on the Right Foot

A PhD student’s guide to running in Boston

OCT 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
On the snowy February morning before my MIT graduate school interview, I rolled out of bed, bundled up and went for a run along the Charles River path. As a former Division One cross country and track athlete, I have been running almost daily for almost a decade. The picturesque scene of a light...

The Unofficial Guide Book for the Grad School Applicant

If you have no idea what to do, you’re well on your way!

SEP 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
I made the decision to apply for graduate school in mid-September of my senior year of college. With application deadlines only weeks away and the GRE looming in the distance, I spent one month scrambling to familiarize myself with the application materials that some of my peers had been refining...

An Open Letter to My Future Self

Thoughts from my last first day of school

SEP 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
Dear future Ming, The date is August 26, 2019 - today is your/my/our first day at MIT. When you next read this after/if you graduate, it may well be the year 2025. How’s life at 27 treating you? In the year 2025, your younger brothers, currently high school freshmen, will be halfway done with...

Practicing Good Hygge-ne

Self-care is so much more than making sure you’ve showered

MAY 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
It is hard to make time for all the things you want to do at MIT. There was one week my Google calendar had so many overlapping events, meetings and deadlines that it looked like a colorful mosaic worthy of the contemporary art section at the MFA. From 9AM to 11AM...

Trains, Buses, and Feet

Seeing all of Boston on the way to class

MAY 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
On Tuesday mornings, I catch a 7:30 bus to get to an 8:30 class. This class is roughly 2.5 miles from my apartment.  Why so far? Well, I’m a PhD student in the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology program, which focuses on integrating clinical experience into an engineering PhD. This involves...

Educating Myself Out of Education

I’m a fast climber, but why should it matter?

MAY 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
I’m not going to lie to you, I don’t always tell the truth.  When people ask me about MIT, I tend to oversell it. After all, it is one of the best, if not the best, university on the planet, nestled at the top of all international rankings. Once up here, everyone simply expects you to be proud of...

A Minor Change for A Major Reward

How playing guitar made my grad school life more enjoyable

MAY 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
I should start a new hobby. I came to this conclusion when my answer to the question, “research + sleep = 24 hours?” was “yes, but not always”. Although finding downtime can be difficult, especially when you are taking courses, it is a necessary part of staying sane and healthy in graduate school....

Cambridge Tea Party

Maintaining your productivitea by getting off campus

APR 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
I might be the only person in the world that looks forward to working on weekends. For most people, weekends are a time to sleep in or to catch up on their favorite TV shows but for me, I use work as an excuse to visit some of my favorite places in Cambridge: coffee shops. On weekdays, I rarely...

My First Autopsy

The importance of seeing the reality of death

MAR 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
As the autopsy technician split the cadaver’s chest open with a scalpel, a part of my identity that I had wrestled with since my undergrad finally settled into focus. I have absolutely no desire to become a doctor. This has not always been the case. Like many of my peers, I had started my...

The Pursuit of Happiness

Make today different from tomorrow

MAR 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
Happiness is a strange thing. Take one of your glorious moments. Mine would probably be the day I learned I was joining MIT. It felt like I had just received my letter of admission to Hogwarts, from Dumbledore himself. I had worked so hard to get to that point, and for all I knew, it was the...

Unscrambling a Scrambled Egg

An algorithmic approach to sustain a healthy long-distance relationship

MAR 2019
Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology
“We are pleased to offer you a spot for the HST MEMP program for Fall 2018….” I freeze while my brain works very hard to process multiple emotions and thoughts. I send a message: “the HST program offered me a spot.” Shortly after, my computer blinks with a response. “Can we talk?” I minimize one...