Unique Scientist: Felicia Lim

Time to meet Felicia Lim (She/her)! Felicia is a molecular biologist and immunologist studying breast cancer and a PhD candidate at Duke University in the USA!

What kind of scientist are you?
I am a molecular biologist and immunologist studying nuclear receptors in breast cancer. I also a believer of giving back to community in any way I can, and I hope that I will be able to do so through #scicomm, #scipol, and #sciencediplomacy.

What made you want to become a scientist?
Being a scientist is not common back home, and I have never met any scientists when I was young so that never crossed my mind. However, I knew early on that I enjoyed Science classes and I wanted to learn more about it, and that’s how I chose my classes and decided on my major when I applied for undergraduate study. The possibility of becoming a scientist was finally presented to me by one of my professors then and I remembered feeling that this is where I should be.

“It has been quite an interesting journey exploring this largely unfamiliar path but knowing that I am not alone in this gives me the strength to keep going.”

Felicia Lim

What makes you a #UniqueScientist?
I am an international first-gen graduate student coming from a culture that still discourages higher education and STEM careers for women. Growing up, I did not encounter many scientists, let alone women scientists of Asian descent. It has been quite an interesting journey exploring this largely unfamiliar path but knowing that I am not alone in this gives me the strength to keep going.

What’s something cool you do outside of work?
I am a largely boring person that enjoy normal things: I love listening to songs of a wide range of genre. I enjoy reading and lately I have taken up hiking. Because of the various places I have been fortunate enough to stay in for my studies so far, I speak at least four languages.

If you had one wish and could change anything in science, what would it be?
I would love the field to be more approachable and accessible to the public. There are so many people out there that would be able to call sciences their homes if they have the opportunity to enter the field. I can so easily be one of them, and I am always grateful for all the lucky turns that I made that brought me to where I am right now.

“There are so many people out there that would be able to call sciences their homes if they have the opportunity to enter the field.”

Felicia Lim

Who has inspired you the most in your journey to where you are now?
There are so many people who have, directly and indirectly, helped me throughout this long journey. I gain courage and strength from many others who are also trying their very best in their own fields and through their works. All of you have inspired me in all the different ways and I hope that I can also be the source of inspiration for someone else one day.

Let’s end on a high note! What’s something you’ve done this week that you’re proud of?
I have just finished one of the many exams for an additional class that I took this semester. It is always a risk to take extra classes but I am glad that I am sticking it out so far even though it has been difficult.


#WomenInSTEM, #AsianInSTEM, #FirstGenDoc

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