Life Choices

Biology Club and PMPD join forces for the Fifth Annual Biological and Health Career Conference

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Life Choices
The Annual Biological Health Conference was co-hosted by the Biology Club and the Pre-Medical Pre-Dental Association. Photo Courtesy of Biology Club.
Abigail Anne Rafael, Senior Editor

Biology Club and Pre-Medical Pre-Dental Association (PMPD) partnered up to bring the Fifth Annual Biological and Health Career Conference to Kean students. The conference featured biology and health professionals who spoke on different subjects to expand students' knowledge of their future career prospects.

"The Biological and Health Career Conference is geared toward helping students get a better understanding of where they want to be in the future in regard to their career, so anything in the biological sciences or health care we try to get professionals in that area to come out and speak to the students," said PMPD President Keia Smith.

The conference is meant to inspire students to realize the wide variety of careers available to them.

"Most biology majors think that if you have a biology degree that you're limited to one or two options: you can go the education route and become a professor or a teacher, or you can go to some stereotypical research lab..." said Biology Club Secretary Elect Arnold Rojas. "The whole point of this conference is to give biology students the opportunity to see that you can do many things with a biology degree. You can go to the health care professions, pharmaceutical, dental, even go to the research labs because there's many different types of research labs as we'll show [them]. [The conference] is really just to open the eyes of young or undecided biology majors who don't know what to do with the degree once they leave Kean University."

One of the speakers was John-Deane Nwafor, the associate director for the Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine. Nwafor's presentation was catered to students interested in working in veterinary medicine. This was his third year presenting at the conference, representing Ross University and giving advice to those wanting to enter the program.

"I've had a chance to sit at a table and talk to students from high school all the way up to undergraduates here at Kean and really explain to them about the admissions process as far as what kind of grades they need, GRE testing [and] board exam testing to prepare them for graduate school. So, this way they really have a game plan and a path way to get from where they are potentially veterinary school."

In his presentation, Nwafor explained the opportunities students have in the field of veterinary medicine.

"[The veterinary medicine program] is a four-year degree program that you complete after your undergraduate studies. It's a very dynamic profession. You could go into clinical practice where you work with small or large animals or even exotic species. Also, you could go into research under One Health," said Nwafor. "One Health is where veterinarians, physicians and scientists try to find solutions to issues that affect animals, humans and the environment."

A common theme of presenters was to acknowledge that there is plenty of opportunities in every given field and the path to achieving success is typically not a straight one.

Other speakers at the conference were as follows:

  • Nima Moayer, RPh
  • J. Philip Festa, PA-C
  • Dr. Ashish Anand
  • Elizabeth Manheim, Ph.D.
  • Dr. Salvatore Coniglio
  • Tracy Heng
  • James Geraldizio
  • Inah Bunales
  • Willan Jumbo
  • Carisa Davis, Ph.D.

Each speaker presented on their specific line of expertise and research, encompassing a wide variety of subjects and fields. The conference was not only a way for students to become informed but also a way for students to network with current professionals in the field.

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about the author
Abigail Anne Rafael - web

Abigail Anne Rafael, Senior Editor

Abigail Anne Rafael is the Senior Editor for The Cougar’s Byte and first joined staff in January 2018. She is a communication major with a concentration in public relations. Abigail aims to inspire and motivate readers with her writing. After graduating from Kean, she hopes to work for a Catholic company to dispel mistruths about the Church.