Ever since Maryam Elizondo learned the Buckyball was discovered at Rice, it became her dream school.
“When I got here, I did the RESP program, which brings together a group of students that don’t come from traditionally competitive high schools, and it kickstarts them into the Rice experience,” Elizondo said. “That’s where I met some of my best friends, and that’s how I started my journey into Rice.”
Initially, Elizondo wanted to go to medical school, but after discovering her love for research, she has decided to pursue an M.D./Ph.D., a dual program where she will become a physician scientist.
“I want to be able to treat patients but also engineer solutions for them specifically so that there doesn’t have to be a middle man between the doctor and the scientist doing all the research,” she said. “Doing research and being a doctor, I can’t see myself choosing, so I thought what the heck, I’ll do both!
From McAllen, Texas, a border town in South Texas, Elizondo said it was a struggle to get to Rice.
“My family really wanted me to stay nearby, but I knew I wanted something more,” she said. “I wanted to be challenged. I wanted to go to the university that I had chosen because of the bioengineering department and because of all the great connections, like the largest medical center in the world next door and all the museums.”