Amazing Students Profiles

Steven Yi

Steven Yi

Steven Yi wants to end the pain, suffering and loss associated with cancer by finding a cure. After losing both parents to cancer, he is studying to be a medical oncologist, but he takes time to help others along the way.



High School:

North Cobb

Degree objective:

B.S. in Environmental Health Sciences, B.S. in Biology

Expected graduation:

Spring 2013

University highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:

I have had the opportunity to take advantage of all the resources that UGA has—from internships, jobs, clubs and volunteer opportunities. I have interned at UGA’s Environmental Safety Division and have learned what it takes to keep UGA safe while being able to explore the entire campus. I did not realize how many precautionary steps we take to keep disasters from taking place along with how big UGA really is.

Through the Environmental Health Sciences department, it has been my honor to receive the Irving Bell Scholarship from the Georgia Environmental Health Association.

In addition, I volunteer for the Athens Regional Medical Center cardiology department and assist doctors, nurses, secretaries and the patients. I also help mentor elementary school children in an after-school program at Thomas Lay Recreation Center by helping with their schoolwork and having some fun at the playground or basketball court. And I am an active member of the National and the UGA American Medical Student Association.

Current Employment:

UGA library security assistant

Family Ties to UGA:

I am the first of my family to attend UGA; my parents did not go to college. I have a cousin who is a graduate.

I chose to attend UGA because…

I always wanted to attend UGA. It was a “no-brainer” to go to UGA, in my opinion, and have not regretted a minute of it. The far yet close distance from home, along with the in-state financial benefits were the major factors in my decision. Aside from economical factors, the vast amount of educational opportunities is the best part. UGA offers diversity and a variety of outlets in which to focus, which is what attracted me to this university. I was not quite sure what my final educational goal was, so UGA was the perfect place to go with its limitless possibilities.

My favorite things to do on campus are…

go to any sports events (free things are a plus), play Ultimate Frisbee on the intramural fields, occasionally work out at Ramsey, and eat at our spectacular dining halls.

When I have free time, I like…

to read, travel with my girlfriend, hang out with my friends and just relax.

The craziest thing I’ve done is…

swim next to a bull shark while scuba diving on the coast of Australia. It was a terrifying sight, but there was no harm done. Luckily my family and I had an experienced, and most importantly, calm instructor. While taking in the beauty of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, some odd yards away was the largest fish I saw all day. But low and behold, it was not quite pretty and more menacing with a lot of jagged teeth. In hindsight, it was not such a big deal, but I probably would not risk swimming with a shark again. My advice is that if you’re ever in that situation, stay in a large group and aim for the eyes, gills and nose.

My favorite place to study is…

in my room because it is quiet and without distractions. Occasionally I like to study in the library or the Miller Learning Center.

My favorite professor is…

There are too many to name, but I would like to mention some that have been very helpful: Anne Marie Zimeri, Travis and Julie Glenn, Terence Centner, Luke Naeher, Wendy Dustman and Mary Alice Smith. All of these teachers have been so very helpful and have reached out to me when I needed them, whether it was writing recommendation letters or guiding me through my years at UGA.

If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with…

I would love to share it with my dad, because he was taken from me before I was able to say goodbye.

If I knew I could not fail, I would…

cure cancer. Cancer has had a huge effect on my life and has taken the lives of both my parents. If cancer could be cured, no one else would have to suffer like my parents did or lose family like I did.

If money was not a consideration, I would love to…

take piano lessons, learn to fly an airplane, skydive, take a trip to South Korea and the rest of the world, including Antarctica, because the vastness of this uncharted territory shows the pristine nature of the world. Basically, I would do almost everything there is to do.

After graduation, I plan to…

attend medical school to pursue a career in oncology.

The one UGA experience I will always remember will be…

was the snowstorms that caused school to be cancelled. It left a wide-open schedule for a field day of sledding on kayaks and cardboard signs. And although it sounds dangerous, driving on the snowy roads was one of the most enjoyable things with the beautiful white scenery in the background and drifting in the empty bowling parking lot.