1--Ever since I was a young child, I have had a curious mind and a thirst for knowledge. As I grew older, I discovered that health care is the field that attracted me the most as it combines scientific knowledge and discoveries with humanitarian service to individuals in need. I soon came to believe that a career in nursing is the most meaningful way I could make a significant difference in people's lives. My education and experience to date reflect my interest in nursing as well as my dedicated, conscientious and caring approach to the discipline. I was a certified nurse assistant from 1995 to 1998, and from 1999 to the present I have been a licensed vocational nurse for a Registry. Since 2005, I have also been a research assistant at L.A. Biomed gaining invaluable experience in hands on biomedical research. This experience is particularly important to me because of a personal tragedy. Two close cousins died from colon and prostate cancer. Since then, I developed a passionate interest in working with others to find a cure for cancer. My participation in U*STAR (Undergraduate Student Training Academic Research) as a research assistant at Harbor-UCLA working on a Selenium and Vitamin E cancer prevention trial is especially fascinating and gratifying to me as it allows me to give my time in a truly important scientific endeavor, learn from professionals and in a small way help to find a cure for cancer. My ultimate goal is to pursue a Ph.D. in the biomedical field as a nurse re
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