Milica believes that some of the most pressing issues of our time can be solved through genetics. Find out how her ambitions led her to the University of Toronto and what it took her to get there.
Milica is a Senior from Serbia, where she was the country's champion in Chemistry and vice-champion in Physics. She has published a paper on The Evolution of the Population That Plays Cooperative Games.
How did you decide to choose the University of Toronto and Genetics?
I had a checklist when I was deciding where I wanted to study. I wanted a progressive and liberal environment and a university that would have a top genetics program. The University of Toronto and Canada checked all these requirements and came as an obvious choice.
What were the main reasons why you wanted to study abroad?
There are very few universities in the world that give that much freedom to their students to design their own education. Equedu showed me how in the U.S. and Canada I could easily merge my skills in physics, chemistry and biology and perhaps pursue a career in biotech later on. Something like that would be almost impossible in Serbia or the rest of Europe.
How did Equedu help you on the journey to your dream university?
Before I found Equedu I was at a loss, meaning that I didn't even know where to start the application process. Equedu helped me to streamline and simplify it, allowing me to focus on the things that mattered. Being able to organize my time properly and having the guidance of someone who already went through the whole process was something that I found most helpful.
How would you describe the interaction with your mentor?
I loved that it was very friendly and informal. I was used to always having very official relationships with my professors, so it was refreshing to be able to work with someone on a peer-to-peer level. The fact that all the mentors went through the application process not so long ago meant that their knowledge and experience was very relevant and insightful.
What was the biggest surprise to you in the application process?
I definitely thought that I would need less work. When I first looked at the Math portion of the SAT, I thought how I already knew everything and that I wouldn't need any preparation at all, but this was very deceiving. My mentor made me face the reality on time and realize that I still had a long way to go before I could achieve the results that I wanted. Other aspects of the application, such as the essays, also take a very long time to perfect, at least 2-4 weeks. It's definitely not something that you could write in just a few days. Another wake-up call happens once you realize the sheer size of the competition and how little room there is for error.
What would be your advice for future applicants?
They should take the application process very seriously from the beginning and they shouldn't leave anything for the less moment as that could significantly impact their chances to receive admission and financial aid.
I would also tell them to believe in themselves. The process can be daunting and scary, but everything is possible with a lot of hard work and focus.