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I believe that HCOE RMTL is already helping me achieve my short and long-term goals. They also keep me in check and motivated, while I strive to obtain my BS. 

Lucas Dantas de Paula 

UCSD Transfer

Lucas moved to San Diego, California when he was 19. A recent US Citizen and native of Brazil he and his family faced many significant challenges while growing up. Since moving to the U.S., he has had to deal with his language barrier and the quiet discrimination of being an immigrant. These challenges have not been obstacles to Lucas, but instead have only influenced him to pursue his education and strive to do his best in school. A current community college and Bridges to the Baccalaureate Program student, Lucas plans to transfer to UCSD. RMTL has provided him with the opportunity to work in a supportive laboratory environment while developing his leadership and delegating skills, versatility, and organizational and data analysis abilities. He plans to pursue his BS and eventually a M.D./Ph.D. to continue working in the research field. 


Alexandra Hernandez

"I am now able to use the knowledge I learned in class and apply in a real world setting, such as the RMTL. I have a new perspective on learning and am excited to continue working in the RMTL and gain a better connection to my peers and staff. "

Junior at UCSD

Alexandra joined the RMTL after hearing Dr. Fricovsky present to the students on campus. The RMTL has provided Alexandra with her first experience working in laboratory setting. She is grateful for the friendly, encouraging atmosphere of the RMTL and working in the lab has been a positive, humbling experience. Alexandra is looking forward to contributing to Dr. Fricovsky’s research. She is currently exploring options for her future career and setting her goals.  

The collaborative effort of the RMTL staff makes the lab a healthy and uplifting learning environment.  I cannot thank them enough for their selfless dedication to the betterment of their students.


Alyssa Clayton

Human Biology Major 

 Her participation in the Bridges to the Baccalaureate program at San Diego Mesa College has been instrumental in her ability to find a research lab that she loves.  Participating in the HCOE RMTL not only has supported her interest, but has also provided her with an exponential amount of support and resources. Alyssa has had the opportunity to present at the 2017 SACNAS and ABRCMS conferences and has been accepted to research programs at Brown University and Stanford University. She looks forward to continue learning and working in the RMTL upon her successful transfer to UCSD. 


Diana Hernandez

HCOE-RMTL helps me reach my goals by allowing me to go outside of the normal requirements and do what I am interested and passionate about. RMTL has opened doors for me and I am now considering thinking about future research possibilities. 

Biology major at UCSD

A fourth year student at UCSD majoring in General Biology, Diana Hernandez was born and raised in San Diego in a bilingual community. Academics has always been very important to her coming from a low-income family. As a UC San Diego student, Diana has been working hard to maintain good grades and continues to do extremely well. Yet, trying to get involved in a lab seemed impossible and almost out of reach, as she didn’t have the same laboratory experience as others students did in high school. RMTL opened this door and allowed her to gain valuable experience. She plans to continue building on this foundation, to get more involved in research and eventually apply to medical 


Naquiba Williams

This program has been very beneficial to me in so many ways, and I feel that it is a necessity for people, especially like me, coming from my background, to continue to strive towards goals set forth and have the confidence to do so. 

UCSD Transfer

Naquiba Williams is an undergraduate transfer student at UCSD majoring in Biochemistry and Cell Biology. Upon coming to UCSD Naquiba questioned whether she would be able to find the support needed in order to achieve her goals and work in a research lab. Coming from a low-income, high-crime area this didn’t seem possible. After successfully transferring to UCSD, she learned about RMTL and was excited to be able to pursue her goals at UCSD.  Working in the RMTL has broadened her interests and develop the confidence to pursue a dual M.D./Ph.D. RMTL program and research staff, has helped Naquiba navigate these paths, while also providing her with the learning opportunities to master biochemical techniques and apply them in the classroom. She is able to conceptualize many things taught and critically raise questions to ask while in the lab in order to brainstorm for future projects or to find another way of problem solving the question at hand.


 Bin-An Nguyen 

Student at UCSD

The RTML has helped me realize that research is one way I can use my science education and knowledge to improve the health of people around the world as a pharmacist and also give back to the community that helped me become the person I am today.  

As an undergraduate at UCSD, Bin-An Nguyen was not very interested in pursuing research. However, this changed after speaking with Dr. Fricovsky at the UCSD Student Run Free Clinic in Pacific Beach. Participating in the HCOE RMTL has given him the opportunity to apply concepts learned in his biochemistry courses, hone his analytical skills, and contribute to a growing body of knowledge that may lead to a greater understanding of specific cancer therapies. Being involved in the HCOE has also provided Bin-An with the mentorship needed to help with pharmacy school applications, his own professional development, and to see the importance of research in the health sciences. 


Sandy Romaea

UCSD Transfer

The RMTL has made me feel validated. To being given this advantageous opportunity, to develop research as an undergraduate, while being surrounded by like-minded, has only fortified my convictions of becoming a science major. 

Sandy Romaea is a first generation college student who started pursing her passion in the pharmacological chemistry field at Cuyamaca Community College before transferring to UCSD. Responding to her passion to the profession of pharmacy, RMTL helped her recognize the vital role that pharmacists play in therapeutic drug discovery. Sandy is currently a senior undergraduate student and will graduate June of 2018 with a B.S in human biology. HCOE-RMTL program not only provided her with great laboratory training techniques to accomplish and achieve her goals, but it also provided Sandy with a collaborative environment and the social and emotional support from the RMTL faculty and staff to succeed and thrive. 

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