• Elsie Hernandez

SkysOcean's Amazing Interview With The Beautiful Chelsea Batista Who Was Accepted to 11 Medical

This interview is close to my heart, especially since Chelsea Batista, is the child of one of my closest childhood friends, Ericka. Ericka has raised such an exceptional young woman and I’m sure you would agree. With hard work and dedication as a proud Latina and a graduate of Macaulay Honors at Brooklyn College, Class of 2017. Chelsea at the age of 21 was able to earn a full scholarship to the medical school of her choice. How amazing is that! With an inspirational family like Chelsea’s, I have to say I am not surprised how strong she has become. I often go to some of their family events and, I fall in love with them every single time. They are a big family with big love. Chelsea is incredibly humble and true to her heart. We are deeply proud to have her on SkysOcean.

Since I personally know you since you were born, I know you are of Dominican decent and were born in New York City. So tell me, how do you feel about the gentrification happening today?

I think gentrification has its benefits and detriments. Bushwick, the neighborhood where I spent most of my childhood, is very different now than it was when I lived there. There are more luxury condos and less dilapidated housing, more artisan businesses, more middle class residents. It also much more expensive to live there now, which is forcing a lot of lower income families to relocate to more affordable neighborhoods. I believe that we all want diversity as well as quality housing in our neighborhoods, but it is a matter of finding a way of accomplishing this for persons of all socioeconomic backgrounds.

What kind of doctor will you become?

I am currently interested in pursuing pediatric oncology. I am, however, keeping an open mind since I’ve heard from many doctors and medical students how often people vary their interests. Nevertheless, I have a strong interest in working with children and also treating chronic or terminal diseases.

Since you have set such a high pedestal for yourself, what are some of the challenges you have faced and how did you overcome them?

I wouldn’t say I have a high pedestal so much as I have high expectations of myself. I have always expected the best of myself and pushed myself to do my best because only then would I be satisfied with my results. With that kind of attitude, my biggest challenge was often self-doubt. I would occasionally question my merit, as well as my abilities, which would hinder my progress. But I also possess a great deal of self-assurance. Any moment when I found myself in doubt, I would remind myself that the only way to know for sure was to try and fail. That mentality would keep me motivated to continue until the end and even when I failed, I would be proud of the fact that I made it as far as I did without quitting.

You come from a strong beautiful family. What have they instilled in you?

My family is full of bright, passionate, and hard-working people who have all shown me the value of perseverance. They brought their children to this country to give them better lives. They selflessly worked and struggled solely for their families’ benefits. They constantly humble me with their unconditional love and support. They were the ones who never doubted me, which is how I learned to rarely doubt myself.

What inspired you to become a doctor?

I was always interested in becoming a doctor, ever since I realized it was possible for a little Latina like me to do so. I always knew I wanted a job that helped people. Once I realized my interest in the sciences and what it was exactly that doctors did, I knew from then on it was meant to be.

Where does your passion come from?

My passion is innate. I have always been full of this overflowing energy and it permeates everything I do. I am passionate about school. I am passionate about medicine, I am passionate about food and family and reading and breathing. It is a quality I am glad to have because it makes my life vibrant and beautiful.

Besides being a great student and future doctor, what else do you like to do?

I like to read during my free time. I like to write poetry and short stories. I intermittently work on a fiction novel when I have significant gaps to focus on it. I also like collecting snow globes from various places I have visited. My family and friends even get me snow globes as presents when they travel to places I have yet to visit.

What is life to you?

Life is all about love. Finding many something’s and many someone’s to love for every day of your life is what I think it is all about.

What advice do you give to those that are younger then you, that also want to become doctors?

If you want it, go for it. It isn’t going to be easy. It isn’t going to happen quickly. You may struggle, you may falter, you may even fail. But if you truly want it, then the fear of failure should never stop you from striving for your goals.

Were you surprised that you were accepted into all of these schools? How many were they?

I was accepted into 11 schools. And yes, I was very surprised. I was hoping just to get into one school, at my most optimistic, I hoped to receive a handful of acceptances. But, once I hit the double digits, I was flabbergasted, honestly. I never in my life thought something like this could happen to me. And I am blessed that it has.

I know recently you received a lot of publicity, like channel eleven and How did that make you feel and how do the people see you now?

I am not really a public kind of person. I don’t use social media very often and I don’t post pictures or videos of myself often either. The main reason I accepted the publicity was because many people were encouraged and motivated by my story. I was happy to open up my private life if it meant proving to all the doubtful little girls like me that it is possible to do something amazing and to be something amazing if you put in the work and you have the passion for it. I have been told by a handful of people what my accomplishments mean to my community and their pride, support, and new-found motivation made it all worth it.

So you are going to Columbia University. Besides learning what do you expect from this college and why did you choose this one?

Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons is a phenomenal medical school, but beyond that, it is the school where I felt most comfortable. The environment of equality, diversity, and mutual support made me feel welcome as soon as I walked in the door. I knew I was surrounded by the kind of brilliant and compassionate people I would love to spend the next four years of my life with. Columbia also has a large variety of programs in which I can continue to be involved in serving my community. Philanthropy has always been an important part of my life and with the many clinics, organizations, and abroad fellowships the university provides, I will certainly not lack for opportunities to give back.

What type of scholarships did you earn and what did you have to do to get it?

I earned both need-based and merit-based scholarships. I was considered for both automatically through my general application, as were all the other students. The total scholarship I have received is substantial and I am grateful to be able to say that I will graduate from medical school with relatively little debt.

Once you become a doctor, is there anything else you would like to do?

I would like to pursue clinical research that focuses on new treatments for terminal conditions. I want to volunteer in local clinics to treat uninsured and poorly insured patients. I would also like to travel. I want to see the world and expand my knowledge through experiencing other cultures. I want to live a happy, fulfilled life doing what I love at work and being content in everything I do.

Thank you Chelsea! I have a feeling that this isn't the last we have heard of Chelsea's achievements, she's up for great things!

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Here are a few articles Chelsea has been on: