Mariam Aboian '00

Class Year


Area(s) of Study

Major in Biology and Minor in Chemistry


Woodbridge, CT

Current Job

Assistant Professor,
Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging
Yale University

Graduate Study

Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science

What made you choose Lake Forest College? My math teacher recommended for me to apply, I received excellent financial aid, I liked the idea of smaller school with more personal attention.

How did a liberal arts education make a difference for you? 
Liberal arts education has been a significant influence on my life.  I still implement the lessons I learned from Lake Forest. Going to LFC has been instrumental in building my confidence and encourage my curiosity in science and medicine.  Without the personal approach to education that I experienced at LFC, I would not be where I am right now.

What experiences outside of the classroom do you think helped prepare you for MSTP (MD/PhD) school?
Research with Dr. Karen Kirk, Richter Scholars program at LFC, research semester at NIH. Dr. Kirk’s lab research was significantly better and more comprehensive than my NIH experience, primarily bc Dr. Kirk was invested in teaching students.  At NIH, students were always coming and going and were not provided the same level of attention as we did at LFC.

How did your time at Lake Forest help you prepare to apply to MSTP (MD/PhD) school programs? 
LFC built my confidence that as long as I work hard and be resourceful, I will be successful in my application to MD/PhD programs. 

What do you think of the new Health Professions Program between LFC and RFU?

It is helpful to have more exposure to health professions when trying to decide which field a student ends up choosing. It all depends on how dedicated RFU faculty are to the students.  From my own experience, having solid research experience in laboratory setting like I had with Dr. Kirk was essential.  Richter Scholars program is also a very transformative experience. Complementing these with some exposure to health professions experience will be useful and may lead to good collaborations and can aid in decisions. For students that want strong academic career in medicine, I do recommend to reach out to Northwestern and U Chicago school of medicine for shadowing experiences and also lab experiences, although these are hard to get when reaching out individually. 

What skills and experiences at Lake Forest do you believe will help you be successful? 
Research with faculty, Richter Scholars program 

What advice would you give a high school student looking to pursue pre-health and is considering Lake Forest College? 
I recommend to do a deep dive into college education, to learn everything possible from each class, to do research with professors at LFC and present at college research symposiums and invited meetings, to ask questions, to do outside rotations at Northwestern and U Chicago school of medicine.  To get involved in Richter Scholars program and follow what makes you want to keep exploring.  I also recommend to apply for Rhodes and Fulbright scholarships and if possible do study abroad. Lake Forest is a very unique university with professors that are stars in their fields and also love to teach.  Spending time with them and learning from them is a resource that is not available to many undergrads.  Therefore, really getting involved in LFC courses and faculty-initiated activities will provide opportunities that will shape the student’s future.