An Amazing Year

Spring 2014

Andy (Guan Xiang) Zeng

Schulich Leader at Simon Fraser University

My second semester has been an amazing end to my first year at SFU. All of my courses have very informative and engaging, and I was fortunate to have had very passionate professors as well. What I valued the most, however, was how these courses have challenged me to form new strategies towards studying for exams and solving problems that I come across. In my math and physics courses, for example, the heavy focus on deriving formulas and theorems -- before we even get to apply the formulas -- has been a refreshing change from my high school calculus and physics courses. It has constantly reminded me not to accept theorems I am presented with in-class until I understand the premise behind it and how it was derived. With respect to my major in Biomedical Physiology, this has really helped me to develop the scientifically inquisitive mindset that is valued in biological and medical research settings.

Outside of my academics, I am still acting upon my role as president of the newly formed SFU Red Cross Club. This semester, our emphasis was on establishing ourselves and further promoting the Red Cross within the campus community. We held fundraisers and events around campus and in the community, but our big project of the semester was a large awareness display in one of SFU's popular buildings. Through the hard work of our dedicated members, our 'Disaster Timeline' effectively highlighted the importance of Typhoon Haiyan's long-term relief efforts, and the unfortunate drop in attention and funding only a few months after the Typhoon took place. I also remain an active member of Phi Delta Epsilon, the medical fraternity on campus, and participated in a few events with them, including SFU's Relay for Life (the picture includes me and a fellow frat member at the event).

This summer, I have been fortunate enough to receive an undergraduate research award, allowing me to join Dr. Angela Brooks-Wilson's team at the BC Cancer Agency. There, I am researching the relationship between genetic variants in the mitochondrial DNA and cases of ovarian cancer. It has been an amazing experience thus far, and is definitely a welcome change from all of my school work.

My first year of university has been nothing short of fantastic, and I am definitely looking forward to the next school year!