Katelynne, 19 – FUNDED

Katelynne Berland is currently studying biomedical engineering, with a focus in cardiovascular engineering, at Georgia Institute of Technology. If that’s not impressive enough, this 1,000 Dreams Fund Scholarship recipient has also not let some health conditions hold her back.

What is your professional dream?

I plan to purse an M.D./Ph.D. program for clinical cardiovascular research, aiming to develop improved bioprosthetic heart valves and surgical techniques.

How will you use the 1,000 Dreams Scholarship?

This scholarship will go towards paying for my out-of-state tuition at Georgia Tech.

How is this scholarship helping you get closer to your dream? 

This scholarship will enable me to spend more time doing research in my current lab, where I am creating 3D models of blood clots in patients’ hearts after valve replacement procedures.

What advice do you have for other young women who are wanting to pursue their dreams?

Do not be afraid to reach out and communicate with professionals in your field of interest about volunteering in a lab, shadowing physicians, and more. Always introduce yourself to all of your professors. They are amazing resources for finding research and internship opportunities and are often extremely willing to help you pursue your own creative ideas for projects and activities.

​Have you had any setbacks? How did you move past them?

Having narcolepsy with cataplexy is a challenge. I must pay close attention to my sleep schedule and exercise to combat my daytime sleepiness. At college, focusing on my time management skills, surrounding myself with great friends, and joining the Club Boxing Team has helped me maintain my health.

What’s next for you? What is your next goal?

Since my summer internship was cancelled due to COVID-19, I hope to find creative ways to help my community cope with this pandemic, continue my research project, and take summer classes.