Carla is an MD-PhD candidate in the Health Sciences and Technology program at Harvard Medical School and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. As a dedicated and reliable graduate student with significant experiences in teaching assistantship, mentorship, and successful fellowship, grant, undergraduate, and MD-PhD applications, Carla is a valuable member of the Cambridge Coaching team.
Carla grew up in Morristown NJ and began college at the University of Virginia, but upon realizing the bioengineering program at UVA did not have the neuroengineering focus area that she was interested in (her long-term goal is to contribute to curing paralysis), she transferred to the University of Pennsylvania her sophomore year. Having successfully gone through the undergraduate admissions process twice (!), Carla can provide valuable insight to high school students beginning the college admissions process (e.g. SAT/ACT prep, admissions essays, how and who to ask for letters of recommendations, and overall tactics for weaving a cohesive, compelling story in an application).
At Penn, Carla became involved in advising, mentorship, tutoring, and teaching assistantships. Carla found her teaching assistant roles particularly rewarding. She found her success was not because she could routinely solve fluid mechanics or physical chemistry problems, but because she sought to understand the course topic on a deeper level. With her students, she tries to relate what is learned in class to develop solutions to real-world needs. She believes this approach to a course topic is a crucial to mastering any subject and is a mindset she tries to impart on her tutees/students.
In addition to keenly serving as a subject tutor (e.g. biology, math, physics, scientific writing), at Cambridge Coaching, Carla will enthusiastically tutor students on post-grad fellowship applications and medical school admissions. During her time at Penn, Carla successfully applied for various internal research grants (The Rose Undergraduate Research Award, University Scholars Program, and Vagelos Undergraduate Research grant). She also successfully applied for the Amgen Scholars Program to conduct research at UC San Diego during her junior summer, and was chosen to receive the John Thouron Prize (granted to 9 juniors or seniors at Harvard, Penn, and Yale) to study at the University of Cambridge during her senior summer. Carla’s proudest fellowship accomplishment was receiving the George J. Mitchell Scholarship – a highly competitive international fellowship for 12 American students to pursue a Master’s degree in Ireland.
Outside of research and academics, Carla loves dogs, sailing, exercising, and just generally being outside.