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Eliana Kim


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I am interested in sustainability, equal health care opportunities, and women's rights.


Glacier Peak High School

High School
2020 - 2024


  • Desired degree level:

    Master's degree program

  • Majors of interest:

    • Computational Science
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Renewables & Environment

    • Dream career goals:



      2022 – 20231 year

      Public services

      • Volunteering

        Snohomish Boys and Girls Club — Coding Instructor
        2022 – Present
      • Volunteering

        Learn To Be — Tutor
        2020 – Present
      • Volunteering

        Key Club — President
        2020 – Present

      Future Interests





      Zachary Scheppat Memorial Science Scholarship
      A picture from my kindergarten graduation appeared on my dad's phone, affectionately saved as "My Beautiful Daughter," when I called him. Although I knew he wouldn’t answer, I dialed my dad's number once more. I firmly believed that my dad would be there for me forever, but I learned that humans don’t live forever, and they eventually leave. My dad received a diagnosis of stage four liver cancer two years ago. I was disheartened when I found it out because my dad was hesitant to get a medical checkup due to its expensive cost, even though he had constant abdominal pain. My dad found his cancer so late that, tragically, he passed away only after three weeks without getting proper treatment. Losing my dad due to financial barriers has shaped me to value accessible healthcare, especially cancer detection. Seeking ways to support others facing physical and financial struggles, I reflected on my experience of utilizing machine learning to distinguish fish from trash in the ocean during my AP Computer Science Principles class. This realization sparked the idea of training AI models to detect cancer cells in CT images, aiming to make an affordable and timely diagnosis more attainable. Thus, to learn more about machine learning, I enrolled in Andrew Ng’s Machine Learning course on Coursera. During the course, I discovered that machine-learning techniques could detect cancer cells 30% more accurately and affordably compared to human radiologists. This new knowledge even more ignited my passion for exploring the machine-learning field further during my college journey to help people like my dad. At the University of Washington, I hope to bridge the worlds of computer science and machine learning to contribute to early cancer detection. My academic goals include developing a strong foundation in algorithmic problem-solving and data analysis skills from courses like Machine Learning (CSE 446), Computational Biology (CSE 428), and Data Visualization (CSE 442). With this knowledge, I plan to participate in cross-departmental research and work with Professor Su-In Lee to develop a cancer detection method. I am excited to work with Professor Lee since she also worked on the application of machine learning to detect cancer more precisely and affordably after her grandmother’s death due to cancer. After learning that cancer patients have increased levels of DNA fragments, I hope to apply a machine-learning model to examine blood plasma for DNA fragments from cancer cells with Professor Lee. Overall, by utilizing AI models, I aim to increase the accuracy of the detection of cancer cells and decrease the time and cost of the detection process compared to human radiologists. Looking beyond graduation, my vision extends to founding a non-profit organization dedicated to making affordable blood tests for cancer detection widely available. Many cancer patients pass away due to late diagnoses. These affordable and accessible blood tests will enable individuals to undergo regular checkups and get diagnosed timely. Also, this timely diagnosis will lead them to get timely treatment. Ultimately, everyone, regardless of financial constraints, will gain access to equal, proper, and timely cancer detection and treatment. I believe that accessible and affordable healthcare should be a universal right, not a privilege. Inspired by my late dad, I am determined to contribute to the development of innovative solutions that will promote health equity. I hope to encourage future software and biomedical engineers with my accomplishments, as I believe that collective efforts can make a huge difference in people’s lives.
      Minority/BIPOC Students in STEM Scholarship
      The catalyst for my interest in geology and natural sciences was a poignant story shared during my dad's high school reunion. My dad’s friend recounted the tragic loss of his brother in a subway explosion in South Korea due to a construction company’s oversight regarding underground pipelines and gas. I became curious about how the company was aware of the underground pipelines and started researching the cause. Then, I figured out that the construction company did not have geologists who could measure how much they could drill the ground. Consequently, the construction workers accidentally drilled an important gas tank, and the collective gas moved through the dirt and led to the explosion of the subway station. This catastrophic explosion affected everything on the road, including a bus carrying my dad’s friend’s brother. Motivated by a desire to prevent such tragedies, I am drawn to the field of geology with a newfound appreciation for its practical applications. Contrary to my initial perception of geology as concentrating solely on rocks, soils, and oils, I have come to realize geology’s real-world challenges. Unlike other fields such as Chemistry, Math, and Biology, which I never applied directly in my everyday life, geology offers tangible solutions to pressing issues as humans live on the soil. To specialize in geology, I am planning to go to the University of Washington after high school. I am interested in being a part of UW’s Earth and Space Sciences department and getting a Bachelor of Science degree in Geoscience. As I am aiming to major in Computer Science also, I want to combine Computer Science and Geoscience to contribute to the advancement of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) by including soil types, terrain, and geological hazards. I plan to take classes including Field Geology with GIS (ESS 401), Geomorphology (ESS 326), and Geophysics (ESS 314) to equip myself with hands-on field experience, GIS proficiency, and geophysical methods in construction projects. With the skills that I will gain, I want to research the impact of human activities on soil and how to reduce the damage from the construction of big buildings at the Quaternary Center. I specifically want to research with Professor Mehra, given his expertise in computational imaging, 3D morphology, and big data. I believe that under his guidance, I will be able to delve into innovative research methodologies that merge geoscience and computer science. My career aspiration is to work with construction companies to enhance safety protocols. I want to ensure accurate measurements in construction processes, mitigating the risk of accidents caused by the oversight of underground elements. My journey into the geology field is fueled by a commitment to making a meaningful impact on the safety standards within the construction industry. Overall, I envision contributing to safer construction environments and buildings, where tragedies like the subway explosion in Korea become preventable through informed geological practices.