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Cell and molecular biology major plans to improve life for older adults

Tatiana Requijo’s sense of empathy is what drives her to be a doctor and make connections with those around her

Pictured: Tatiana Requijo
Pictured: Tatiana Requijo Photography: Jonathan Cohen.

“At Binghamton, you realize the impact you can make on the people you meet and that helps inspire them to do things for other people as well,” she says.

The senior from Queens, N.Y., says she has wanted to be a doctor since she was in middle school. Getting experience has given the cell and molecular biology major the opportunity to see what the field is like.

“I started volunteering at hospitals and getting involved in research,” she says. “It made me see that I liked human biology and science and being able to empathize with people.”

Requijo wants to go into geriatric care and improve life for older adults.

“I see a big problem in healthcare where they’re not always given the attention they need,” she says. “I want to be part of the solution and be there for people who don’t have someone to care for them.”

She’s also shown support to students in the Dickinson Community as an RA.

“I knew I would be there to tell students about different resources, but I didn’t realize how much I would be able to help them by listening,” she says. “I didn’t realize how much they would open up to you if you were there to offer a listening ear.”

Through the Binghamton University Scholars Program, Requijo has also made many lasting relationships. The program is one of the reasons she chose Binghamton.

“It just felt so family-oriented and I didn’t feel like a small fish in a big pond,” she says. “I was able to make connections with people very easily.”

A small number of incoming freshmen are invited into the Scholars Program Requijo says. It focuses a lot on the freshmen experience and bonding with others in the program by living together, participating in different events and volunteering together she says.

“It’s not focused so much on adding classes to your schedule, but rather building a smaller group in a bigger place,” she says.

Requijo has served on the program’s academic committee since her freshman year and is now an assistant in the Scholars office. She oversees the growth and success of the program.

“In a leadership position, I’m able to tease out everyone’s strengths and see how this can contribute to a good program,” she says.

Being a Scholar pushed Requijo to get involved in different things, such as several medical internships. She has shadowed physicians at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City and completed other internships in the city as well.

Mentoring students is another important part of the program that Requijo plays a role in. Past scholars have been a mentor to her and this influenced her to mentor others.

“Taking me under their wing has made me want to help other students later on,” she says. “It’s inspired me to give back.”

She hopes to use her education minor to help others. She says she wants to be involved in academic medicine and research.

“I want to be able to develop things, answer questions and apply them on a larger scale to create treatments, cures and preventative health measures,” she says.

In her spare time Requijo also loves to do group exercise classes, such as spinning and yoga.

“I like everything that I’m involved in, so I find time for it,” she says. “I try to involve myself deeply in the things I really care about.”

Requijo sees the Scholars Program as one of the things that have impacted her the most in her time at Binghamton.

“From the very beginning, it felt like a family,” she says. “Although Binghamton has such a large campus, it’s not a place where you ever feel lost. It’s easy to make connections with other people and then pay it forward.”

Last Updated: 8/30/16