Trang Pham

Trang Pham ’21

Name: Trang Pham
Year: junior  
Major: biochemistry
Home state, country: Dak Lak, Vietnam  


  • Cochary Gross Scholarship
  • Rachel Brown Scholarship
“My lab skills were very shaky in the beginning. I hadn’t had much exposure to labs before and I didn’t even know how to hold a pipette properly. But my professor saw my potential before I could even see it myself.”

“An elegant expression of math, physics and chemistry” is how junior Trang Pham describes biochemistry, her chosen major. As a student with limited exposure to science labs before coming to Mount Holyoke, Pham was inspired by the faculty. She enrolled in Introduction to Research, taught by Wei Chen, and found her calling.

Under the mentorship of Chen, the Marilyn Dawson Sarles, M.D. Professor of Life Sciences, Pham realized that she really likes investigating at the molecular level. She was also inspired when Chen spoke to her about alumnae who were putting their biochemistry degrees to work in neuroscience.

36% of Mount Holyoke students major in STEM fields. Many go on to earn advanced degrees in their fields, changing the face of scientific research and practice.

“When I received my endowed scholarships, my first reaction was surprise and hope,” Pham says. “I looked up the donors and the past award recipients, and they are all so accomplished and passionate about their work. I thought, these people lead such interesting lives as scientists and physicians!

“They’re very active in their fields and Mount Holyoke seems very important to them,” she says. “I feel a sense of responsibility to live up to the alums who have paved the way before me, and to give back whenever possible. They are examples of who I want to become.”