Mukilteo’s Simran Handa receives $1,500 scholarship for Washington women in STEM

Aug 08, 2018
Courtesy of: Anderson Sobel Cosmetic Surgery Simran Handa, a junior at Lewis & Clark College who is from Mukilteo. She received a $1,500 scholarship from Dr. Alexander Sobel for Washington women in STEM.

Alexander Sobel, DO, FAACS of Bellevue recently announced that Simran Handa, a junior at Lewis & Clark College from Mukilteo, is the recipient of the second annual WISE (Women in STEM Excel) Scholarship. This scholarship was developed by Sobel to help support and empower female students living in Washington as they pursue a degree in a STEM-related field.

"Like last year, we were very impressed with all the accomplished women who applied for the scholarship," said Sobel. "All of our applicants were inspiring and highly qualified. Simran Handa stood out for her dedication to her studies and drive to support her community."

Handa is currently majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Lewis & Clark College, in addition to her active involvement in a number of student clubs, associations, and peer tutoring.

On top of her classes and workload, Handa has also performed investigative cancer research through Fuchs Lab at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, interned at the Oregon Clinic and The Foundation for Surgical Innovation and Education, and studied the formation of gut granules at Hermann Lab.

As a student ambassador with the Student Alumni Association, LEAP Mentor, and peer tutor in writing, biochemistry, chemistry, and biology, Handa doesn't let her large academic load keep her from supporting her fellow STEM students.

She also serves as the president of the Pre-Health Professions Club, Officer of Gender Minorities in STEM, and Founder and Officer of the Asian Student Union.

Handa's interest in science and dedication to helping her community started long before college.

"My passion for science fully blossomed during my eighth grade biology class; as I learned about DNA and cells for the first time, I immediately fell in love with the unseen molecular world surrounding us. I knew that the best way I could leave the world a better place was through my passion for science," Handa said. "Specifically, I want to focus on uncovering the mysteries of pathophysiology; the human body is inexplicably complex, and there is much left to be discovered."

Throughout high school, Handa volunteered over 300 hours of her time supporting a variety of organizations, from working in the Mukilteo Community Garden to serving food at Annie's Soup Kitchen.

She helped raise $2,000 with One Dollar for Life to build a birthing center in Nepal, which is now open and serves a population of 6,000 villagers in Chhisti.

"I believe Simran Handa will continue achieving great things, and I feel fortunate to have become acquainted with this inspiring young woman," said Sobel. "The STEM fields are a vibrant part of the Washington landscape, and it's important to help make sure that all those who feel called to these careers receive equal opportunities. I look forward to continuing this scholarship opportunity to aid women pursuing education in STEM."


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