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   Date: 3/9/10 Bookmark and Share

Ana Florina Voica ’07

Home country: Romania
Major: chemistry and biochemistry

After graduating from Smith in 2007, I started graduate school at The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, California. I am planning to obtain a Ph.D. in organic chemistry by 2012. In the past two and half years, I have been very focused on my research, but I did get a chance to visit my family back in Romania for two weeks. After earning my Ph.D., I am considering continuing in academia or pursuing a career in the pharmaceutical industry.

Without the Coulter scholarship, I would have never been able to get an education in the United States, and certainly not at a school like Smith College. Basically, this scholarship helped me establish the foundation for my career. I have the utmost appreciation for the education I have received at Smith. The liberal arts education has helped me stay balanced in a lab where research is carried on for 12 hours a day, six days a week.

If I were to tell future international student about life at Smith, I would say that no matter how different Smith seems at the beginning, donít be afraid to open your mind and to embrace all the diversity of that place. Live fully at Smith because there wonít be another time in your life when you will feel that free. The resources at Smith are outstanding so take advantage and strengthen your mind, your body and your spirit while you are there. You will need that discipline in the real world. Also, donít forget to explore all the opportunities for travel. The study abroad programs are great! So, do your best, work hard and have faith that everything will pay off!

I have been very fortunate to have received the generous support of the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation. I would like to tell future scholarship supporters that their gift to Smith can bring a young woman from a forgotten corner of the world on the edge of achieving the American dream. A good investment in real talent is the utmost value you can get from your money and the best gift you can make to the world!


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