A Project SEED Success
When Christine Sit moved to San Francisco from Hong Kong at age 16, she was interested in math and science but didn’t have any particular educational or career aspirations. Luckily, her mother worked for Sheila Yeh, a colleague of Dr. Elaine Yamaguchi, the Bay Area Coordinator of Project SEED, who encouraged Christine to apply for the program. As a result, Christine spent two summers in Project SEED, and today she’s grateful to Sheila and Elaine for introducing her to the program that changed her life.
“If not for Project SEED, I probably would have pursued some other major in college and would have taken a different career path than I did,” she explains. Today, Christine is a dentist at the community clinic where her family received their dental treatment when they first arrived in the United States.
In addition to gaining hands-on research experience under the tutelage of supportive mentors, Christine also received a stipend for her work, which she used to help pay for college. After her participation in Project SEED, she decided to major in biochemistry at San Francisco State and then went on to earn her D.D.S. at the UCFS School of Dentistry.
As someone who believes that she wouldn’t have become who she is today without Project SEED, Christine is a strong advocate of the program. “It’s more likely that underprivileged kids will go on to college if they know what they want to do or what they are interested in, in high school,” she says, adding that many young immigrants take the shortest path to a job because they don’t have the resources to explore their options.
“Project SEED changes kids’ lives,” asserts Christine. “There have been so many successful cases where students went to a good college and majored in science.” Clearly one of these successes herself, Christine hopes the program will continue to benefit generations of potential scientists.
Project SEED develops scientifically literate citizens and often produces a chemist where there might not have been one. The more support we have, the greater the number of students who can participate in this program.