SIWEI ZHU ‘16 is a registered dietitian and a Graduate Student in Epidemiology at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “Public health scientists work together to improve the lives of people around the world and reflect the core value of living compassionately.”
Though she pursued epidemiology largely because of research work done in a college lab course, she credits volunteer opportunities at Lancaster Mennonite in creating a spirit of “servant leadership” in her that influences her work today. “This type of leadership focuses on the growth and well-being of people and the communities to which they belong.” Zhu plans to use her career in public health to serve her community.
While at LM, she was also inspired by several art classes taught by Mrs. Kathy Ciaccia. Her “guidance and kind words
have empowered me not only in performing art, but also in all other aspects of life.” Zhu says painting and sketching are
still hobbies that bring her peace and confidence. In addition to her work and graduate studies, she is a co-founder of Selene Health, a women’s wellness start-up created to fill a gap in women’s healthcare. Their team provides “personalized health and wellness products and service” to underserved women in their community.
To Zhu, teaching compassion is important because, “It encourages students to think beyond themselves and to be aware of the feelings and needs of others.” She says that, “When you achieve something that makes you proud, share your
experience to help those who are in need.” That is how any person, in any career, can emulate living compassionately.