JANUARY’S STUDENT OF THE MONTH: FILIPE FERREIRA DOS SANTOS

SOTM winner

Name: Filipe Ferreira dos Santos
Field of Study: Biomedical Sciences
U.S. Host Institution: University of Cincinnati

New year, new start! Do you have a New Year’s resolution? What do you hope to accomplish this year, and throughout the rest of your stay in the U.S.?

Fortunately, I had the chance to celebrate New Year’s Day with my parents here in the US and I am very thankful for that. For me, this year is going to be a new start. Although I have already received thousands of blessings by God throughout my life, since when I was born, I feel that this year can give me even more happiness. Actually, my most important one is my adoption by my parents when I was just a baby because everything I know, everything I am, and all the other blessings in my life have occurred because of this.

From that time on, I could describe many other examples for which I am very thankful, so I am going to describe three more outstanding ones. First, I definitely have to mention about the first scholarship I achieved while studying at Guilherme Dumont Villares School for secondary school. That scholarship was undoubtedly very meaningful for me, not because of the money itself, even though it was essential. My mom’s car had been stolen a year before, and I told her that I would try to get that scholarship to help her buy a new one. After a hardworking year, I got good grades and competed with hundreds of students to win one of those scholarships offered by the school. Surprisingly, having just one ticket, I won and thereby I could help my mom. Because of that event I have become more motivated to study even harder in order to give back to society all that has been given to me.

In addition, when I was in high school, my interested in Genetics began. Simultaneously, I became motivated to study cancer, since I always watched on TV or read newspapers about people all over the world dying of cancer. As a result, my major in Brazil at Federal University of Sao Paulo (UNIFESP) is Biological Sciences and I am also doing research there about thyroid cancer.

Additionally, I had a dream to study in the US because I knew they’d have strong research programs about cancer and a high investment in it. After that, I discovered the Brazil Scientific Mobility Program. Hence, after many efforts, I could come to the US and accomplish my dream. Nowadays, I am at the University of Cincinnati taking classes related to cancer research and Bioinformatics and supporting the Relay for Life movement. I am so thankful for this opportunity of being here in the US learning a lot about cancer and Bioinformatics, given by BSMP.

Lastly, I am honored in receiving at least one more big blessing: to use all that I am learning in Brazil and in the US to help many families in the future who will be faced with cancer by developing new and more efficient drugs and treatments. Therefore, I have a very clear New Year’s resolution in my mind. I hope to learn more about computer programming, statistics, and the biology of cancer, which are going to be essential for my internship. I also hope to enjoy my internship at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and learn more about cancer research and Bioinformatics. I would also like to stay involved with Relay For Life and the America Cancer Society in order to touch people’s lives and help in the fight against cancer. I would be able to apply everything I learn in Brazil over my last semester at UNIFESP.