Sina Heng, Class of 2017
Hometown: Sisophon, Cambodia
Major: BA, Biology
Started in Academic English Studies: fall August 2013
Why Lewis & Clark?
I first heard of Lewis & Clark from my Cambodian friend and my best friend’s sister. Both of them are LC alumni. Before deciding to come to LC, I talked to the two alumni and I was convinced that LC would be my place. I was very amazed as I learned about the science department, overseas programs as well as the location of LC. More importantly, LC offered me a generous scholarship to support my studying.
I came to Lewis & Clark with several majors in mind: Biology, Chemistry, Psychology and Environmental Studies. It was hard from the beginning to decide which one to pursue, but thanks to the liberal arts education, I was able to explore and discover my passion in Biology.
I had a wonderful college experience at LC. I made a lot friends from all over the world. I had supportive professors and staff. I also enjoyed many extracurricular activities on campus. Portland is very friendly and beautiful as well as easy to get around. I could not ask for a better college experience than what I had at LC and Portland.
I am very proud of my summer internship at Institut Pasteur du Cambodge. With all the effort I put in classes, the help from professors, encouragement from friends and the Miller internship award from the Career Center, I was able to intern at the research institute for 11 weeks working on HRP-2/3 gene deletion in the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. It was a very meaningful experience to work with many passionate scientists and learn about so many new techniques, concepts, and about the malaria situation in my own community.
Student Life and Leadership
I enjoyed being a leader in new international student orientation each fall. I had a lot of fun making new friends and showing them LC and Portland life. In addition, being the president of International Students of LC was also a very meaningful and memorable experience. Other than that, I worked to get myself out of my own comfort zone and get connected to the local community outside of campus.
How did your time in AES (Academic English Studies) classes help prepare you for being a student at Lewis & Clark?
It is hard to believe that it’s been 4 years already since I started at Lewis & Clark and AES. Back then, being a part of AES community allowed me to slowly but smoothly transition into college. AES classes taught me to write and communicate effectively in academic setting.
What does Lewis & Clark mean to you?
LC now has become one of my identities. I will always be a Pioneer wherever I go and whatever I become in the future.
What is next for you?
My ideal plan is to work for a couple of years in the research field and then pursue higher education in molecular biology. For now, I am in the process of looking for a job around the Pacific Northwest, mostly in Portland and Seattle.
Advice for Future Students
Be brave, explore and have fun. There are so many unknowns to be discovered in a diverse community like LC and Portland. LC has taught me to be a confident and open-minded person.
How would you explain a liberal arts education?
To me, a liberal arts education provides a wide range of knowledge and prepares many intellectual individuals. It pushes students to explore outside of their comfort zone and discover who they really are and how much potential they have to do other things outside of their interests.