Steven Han’s first exposure to medicine was when he fainted in kindergarten. There were other sign markers pointing the way towards a career in healthcare. His grandfather was a doctor; he excelled in science and math in high school and he had an interest in biology. “A culmination of experiences led me to believe that a career in medicine was the only job fit for me,” said Han, who received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology from Caldwell University on May 20.
This summer Han takes a big step in that journey towards becoming a doctor when he begins attending Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall University. Being accepted validated his undergraduate efforts and he is happy that his medical school will be close to Caldwell.
During his undergraduate years, he learned the value of research and presented at the Independent College Fund of New Jersey and at Caldwell’s Creative and Research Day. He is grateful to Dr. Agnes Berki, associate professor of biology, mentoring him on his independent research for topics such as “Investigation of Microorganisms on Smartphones,” (basically the gross stuff on your phone) and “The Use of Fecal Microbiota Transplant in Treating Inflammatory Bowel Diseases.” The professors at Caldwell are what made his experience incredibly special.
“My mentors here not only taught me how to excel in my studies but went far and well beyond their role as just teachers and guided me to develop professionally, said Han who is from Reisterstown, Maryland.
He appreciated Caldwell’s Catholic Dominican foundation which gave him the ability to thrive in an environment dedicated to helping him see the value of service. He participated in Midnight runs to reach out to the homeless in New York City, which he says was “a unique, humbling experience,” and he was grateful for Caldwell’s commitment to embracing diversity. “I was able to expose myself to a number of cultures which will undoubtedly help me in the real world after graduation.”
Han was involved in community service as a member of the campus Circle K club and served on the Student Government Association Academic Affairs Committee. At honors convocation he received the C-Pin award for the senior class. The award goes to an exemplary student who was nominated by his or her peers.
Through his many experiences and his studies, his interests and passion for medicine were reaffirmed. Caldwell helped him reflect on his purpose as a student and his place in the world. He looks forward to determining his medical specialty and “eventually settling down to start a family.” Most of all he is grateful to his peers, professors and faculty. “It has been the best four years of my life.”