October 30, 2023

How Anagha started her career in medicine as a freshman in high school

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Nurturing passion for medicine - early.

Anagha Hamsala’s interest in medicine started early.

“When I was four years old, I would make my Dad [play] my patient and I’d make up all these names for diseases,” says Anagha. “And I made ‘hospitals’ for my stuffed animals and prescribed ‘treatments’.”

This isn’t an unusual story. Young kids use playtime to explore the world. What makes Anagha’s story remarkable is the way her family picked up on early cues and provided her with resources to blend her world of make-believe with the real world.

Anagha’s family took notice of her early interest in medicine and was intentional about ensuring Anagha knew she could accomplish anything she set her mind to. This meant nurturing her attraction to STEM in ways that extended beyond playtime.

When Anagha proudly announced that she'd learned what vitamin D was that day, her grandparents told her she'd make a great doctor, and they provided her with some resources to better expose her to the field. Soon, Anagha was poring over the American Medical Association Encyclopedia of Medicine.

Fueling a passion for medicine through entrepreneurship

"I was really interested in entrepreneurship and medicine, but I just didn't know how I could use them together."

That’s when she met BETA Camp.

“When I was talking to Salman [BETA Camp’s Program Director] about how my passion and what I aim to do in the future, he gave me like so many cool ideas of how I could create a fusion of medicine and entrepreneurship in my career, and how like I could just start my career within a span of like, three months and just make it skyrocket.”

During BETA Camp, she didn’t go for a medical company. Anagha and her team launched Media Curators, a platform connecting teens with social media skills to small businesses that need help marketing to GenZ. 

“The program provided us with the resources that we could use in order to succeed in that sort of niche.”

But more importantly was the mindset and confidence she took away. No longer just a passive reader of Encyclopedias, she was now a doer

“When I joined BETA Camp, it's something different altogether. It's not an extracurricular; it becomes a part of your character. It shapes who you are and personally, there is no greater gift than being able to assess and witness your personal growth at such a young age and being able to feel this sort of accomplishment. I go to bed and I'm like I did that. I've accomplished that. You carry that lifelong.”

That confidence made her realize she wasn’t too young to dive into the medical field. Returning to school after BETA Camp, she connected with a few peers that were also interested in the field. And she had a new perspective on to her true passion: neuroscience.

“When I was 10, I wanted to join a college-level neuropsychology club,” says Anagha. They doubted her maturity level and declined her request to join. 

To be taken seriously, Anagha knew she’d have to gain experience. But seeing as there weren’t many neuropsychology clubs made specifically for ten-year-olds, what was Anagha supposed to do? Give up?

She went back to what her grandfather (one of her biggest advocates) told her: “Why wait to start your career when you can start it now?”

Equipped with an entrepreneur mindset, Anagha and her peers launched their own nonprofit organization, Medicine Marvels, to help expose kids to medical careers and give students a space to share their passion for medicine. By building her own thing, Anagha didn’t just get something to put on her resume — she made a name for herself in the community.

Since launching Medicine Marvels, Anagha has logged several impressive accomplishments, including:

You don’t have to wait to start your career

Her advice for other students? 

“Start your own thing. Your passions have no limits, so your age shouldn’t limit you, either.”

"Medicine is one of those fields where you have to have a lot of experience and anytime you want to get an experience, they're going to ask you for experience. And you're like, I want to get an experience and I don't have any. How am I supposed to do that? I feel like a lot of it is based on the initiative that you take to help your community, and that comes from the drive and just power within you. When friends come up to me and ask me for advice on doing something they are passionate about, my response to that is automatically: start your own thing."

“BETA Camp allowed me to bridge the gap between entrepreneurship and medicine and truly discover why I was so passionate about those two things.”
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