Kippy Deol

BA in Health Sciences

A passionate student with a heart for helping others, Kippy Deol is making the most of her FHS academic experience to prepare her for a future making a difference in people’s lives.

From a young age, Kippy Deol wanted a career in the health field - be it as a doctor or a nurse, she always wanted to help people. It was when she was introduced to the Faculty of Health Sciences that she realized the seemingly endless possibilities to get involved in the health field, and the application of FHS education to real-life situations. With the COVID-19 pandemic, she even saw the opportunity to understand how one’s living environment can affect them.

“I wanted a degree that focuses on the public health and social determinants of health aspect, and my passion resides in making a difference in aged policies,” says Deol. “The pandemic is an opportunity to realize that our environment vastly influences our physical, mental, and emotional health. As a student in FHS, I hope to make a difference in these environments to help people live life to their fullest potential.”

Currently in her third year at SFU, she has been exploring courses that tackle health effects of intergenerational trauma for Indigenous children and communities. Deol’s goal with her degree is to help deepen the understanding of the effects of an unstable intrauterine environment on children's health outcomes later in adulthood. Ultimately, she hopes to improve the living conditions of Indigenous communities to strengthen their health outcomes.

“Taking HSCI216 with Dr. Pablo Nepomnaschy, he introduced me to the concept of epigenetics, which can be described as the study of how our behaviour and environment can alter how our genes function,” Deol explains. “This can be a gateway to many health disparities, especially among Indigenous communities that suffer many health consequences due to their unstable environments. A degree in health sciences allows me to provide insight into these situations, which can help generate much-needed change within the Canadian health policies to close the health gap for Indigenous peoples.”

When Deol completes her BA degree, she plans to complete a Master of Public Health degree, and potentially attending medical school to have a hands on opportunity to help people. For students looking for words of wisdom, she advises students to explore and step outside of your comfort zone to find out what you are passionate about.

“The best advice I have been given from a mentor was, ‘If you never ask, the answer will always be no,’ these are the words that helped me build connections with my professors, pushed me to ask questions in class and office hours, and ask for help when needed,” she explains. “At the end of the day, find what makes you happy and give it your all!”