​One Step, Almost There

Karishma LakhaniKarishma Lakhani’s path to her lifelong goal started at a neonatal intensive care unit in Virginia. Her mother had just given birth to premature twins, and 13-year-old Karishma was incredibly touched by the care given to her newborn brother and sister. She knew she wanted to do that: have the power to save someone’s life.

Today, Karishma is one step closer to that goal. While at Santa Monica College, she became Secretary of SMC’s Pre Health-Association, President of the Future Alumni Club, and a President’s Ambassador. She was also selected to be a UCLA Care Extender intern, which gave her the chance to don scrubs and shadow and assist doctors and nurses on duty. She interns at the UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica, in addition to school and her professional responsibilities at SMC.

At SMC, Karishma also found new passions. After taking a study abroad trip to Belize and Guatemala, she switched her major to anthropology. “I enjoy biology, but anthropology gives me the ability to see people from a different perspective,” she said, “which is something I think is very important if you want to work in the medical field.”

Karishma’s motivation is simple: “What keeps me going is thinking of what I’ll feel like when I do get my degree, how I will make my parents proud.”

Karishma is transferring to UCLA—her dream school!—as an anthropology major, with future plans including medical school and a specialization in neonatology. She graduates from SMC with two degrees: an Associate Degree in Liberal Arts and an Associate Degree in Social and Behavioral Science.


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