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Monday, June 17, 2024

19-year-old boy bags Informatics degree at US university, wins masters scholarship at Cambridge

A 19-year-old boy named Daniel Chen has bagged an informatics degree at the University of Washington in the United States and was awarded a scholarship to study for his master’s at the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.

Daniel, a Sammawish native was awarded the prestigious Marshal Scholarship to further his postgraduate studies. The Marshal Scholarship is one of the highest honors available to college graduates in the United States.

The awards pay all expenses for up to three years of study at a British university of the student’s choice. Marshall scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a degree in the United Kingdom. 

“I was so surprised when I learned I was awarded. This is such an honor. The Marshall Scholarship is a great example of taking U.S. and U.K. perspectives and putting them together to work and discover and push for better health, not just for these two countries, but for the world at large,” he said.

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Daniel graduated from the University of Washington, United States with majors in Informatics (data science) and Microbiology. He to UWNews that he plans to pursue a Master of Philosophy degree at Cambridge, delving deeper into biological sciences and genomic medicine.

Eventually, Daniel hopes to earn an M.D. and a Ph.D., to become a physician-scientist and professor researching while practicing in a clinic. The vice provost and dean of Undergraduate Academic Affairs at the University of Washington, Ed Taylor said the scholarship is a wonderful opportunity for Daniel.

“Daniel’s rigorous undergraduate scholarship on topical and complex medical issues is exemplary. This recognition will provide a wonderful opportunity for Daniel, who is already dedicated to the medical sciences, to deepen and extend his scholarship,” Taylor said.

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Daniel enrolled at the University of Washington when he was 14, through the Robinson Center for Young Scholars Early Entrance Program. During his undergraduate career, he conducted research at the university and some of the most prestigious research labs.

His research examines how and why some people contract long COVID and what is happening at the cellular level. He also conducted single-cell research on pancreatic cancer and COVID-19 patients and gained experience in bacterial cloning and genetic engineering while working in a medical microbiology lab.

While in Britain, Daniel said he plans to study with Sarah Teichmann of the Sanger Institute to acquire an understanding of the computational biology toolkit. He said he is looking forward to immersing himself in British culture and learning from people who are different from him.

He has many scholarships and awards added to his portfolio. He was the recipient of the Goldwater Scholarship, Mary Gates Research Scholarship, Microbiology Undergraduate Research Award, and Levinson Emerging Scholar Award.

Daniel also received the Microbiology Erling J. Ordal Award for best senior thesis, a Washington Research Foundation Fellowship, and a Microbiology Summer Interdisciplinary Research Fellowship.

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