Wednesday, August 30, 2017


I got a phone call from my faculty, Apparently it's now time for new students intake and the faculty want to 'invite' me as one of alumnus rep to meet the juniors of my course program, and talk about stuffs I feel relevant. When presented this opportunity, I found it rather jarring on so many levels.
1) It's comical because I'm anything but a model student. I bend (most people call it 'break') all the rules when I'm in their shoe, to fulfill my idea of student life.
2)I haven't had any contact with my faculty since graduation. Also non-existent in alumni association. Definitely not a model alumni either.
3) Not sure if I accomplished anything significant that warrants me the position to tell even juniors anything about this field of study. I’m still figuring out all this myself tbh.
So why me? The faculty conceded that my contacts were given to them by some other seniors they first approached, So yeah, must be all them better fitting seniors are unavailable.
So I need to talk about something useful and relevant to the new juniors of my course program.

You see, it’s a personal dilemma because I believe the best message about any subject is the one delivered from its genuinely passionate devoted practitioner and frankly speaking this subject and I is not exactly that. I might fared well (kinda) in science & tech field, but I realize outside that obligation I have strong affinity towards humanities, philosophy & sociology, and arts. I read & grok books encompassing these topics. I am very interested to understand human behavior & perception of this world to fully appreciate the diversity.

Working in science & tech while maintaining penchant for humanities & sociology is not exactly a seamless transition. They shouldn’t be treated as polar opposite but I regrettably I feel that way and I am conflicted in that specific chasm. Almost like leading double identity, I feel dishonest to myself, equals to not worthy to tell juniors what to do..yeah the thought snowballed following that pattern.

Until one day, it occurs to me that this chasm is not that much of a divide afterall, they actually coalesce. When I  do biological data informatics, I’m learning deeper about humans too by looking directly at their genetic  blueprints. While I’m designing Artificial Intelligence-Deep Learning application, I dive into some eye opening ideas on human thought processes eg: to build inferences and filtering assumptions to emulate them in silico. The methods I adopt might be unconventional but the goal is the same- to understand better about humans and human mind. Turned out I still can tap all them in parallel! This moment of realization settles down the personal dilemma.

So this is my story about bioinformatics, a personal anecdote. I’m not going to yap about study smart & score good grades, pursue academic excellence to the top tier blablabla because that’s everyone's personal learning curve to experience. If you can, try to carry the knowledge you studied to it's respective profession, because we are all units of investment for our community/nation. If everyone opt out from their discipline after graduating in pursuit of more popular careers, that’s a lot of failed investment, money flushed down the drain.

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