Name: Steven Ebker
Hometown: Umatilla, OR
High School: Umatilla High School
College: Oregon State University
Year in school: Junior
Major: Bioresource Research
Activities involved in on campus: Mentorship programs for domestic and international students, and bioinformatics/genomics research 

What is one of the best things about college?
Having a wide range of opportunities to take advantage of. OSU not only has helped me pursue a career in STEM, but also has challenged me to become a better person.

How has GEAR UP helped you?
GEAR UP has helped me socially and psychologically. As a peer mentor [at the GEAR UP Student Leadership Event], collaborating with students has encouraged me to take risks and evaluate my current goals. I enjoy helping others, and GEAR UP is a program that gives students the chance to learn beyond a classroom environment.

What are your future career plans?
My future career plan is to become a medical research scientist who studies cures for human diseases. Currently, my area of specialty may be in neurological diseases and disorders.

What advice do you have for middle and high school students about how to prepare for college?
Take a risk that might embarrass yourself and cause you to fail. You might not be happy with the results, but you'll learn something very important. You will face difficult problems in your future, and how you react to them will determine how far you go in life.