by Hannah Bahney
For Chancellor’s Scholar Ibrahim Khan, the IUPUI Honors College provides a community of academic encouragement and comradery.
“It’s really nice when you can come down to the Honors College and there are people who might be ahead of you in classes that you can ask for advice,” says Khan. “It’s helped me be a better student.”
As a Chemistry Peer Mentor, Khan is no stranger to the value of peer tutoring. He leads recitations, where he reviews material with small groups of students in beginning level chemistry courses.
Khan, a chemistry and biology major, has already participated in many research experiences even as he begins his junior year at IUPUI. In his Life Health Science Internship, an IUPUI-initiated program that connects students in life and health science majors with faculty and staff, Khan conducted research on congenital heart defects and the genetics behind them.
His internship set the stage for his current research job at the Wells Center for Pediatrics at the Department for Immunology and Molecular Biology in the IU School of Medicine.
Khan’s passion for science and interest in medical school led him to study abroad in Japan, where he and other IUPUI students experienced health care facilities in a diverse culture. Their trip included a stop at a nursing home in Hiroshima.
“Hearing about the experiences of the atomic bomb survivors was really impactful, and I wish everyone could have an experience like we did,” says Khan.
Studying abroad was not something he considered before coming to IUPUI, and he credits the Honors College study abroad stipend and the university’s encouragement with changing his mind.
“Seeing another culture was a wonderful experience,” says Khan, who urges other students to study abroad. “The stipend provides a great opportunity for Honors students.”
Last year, Khan was approached by one of his chemistry professors and asked to be part of a research team whose findings were presented at an international poster session and then later published. He advises students to take advantage of the classroom dynamics offered at IUPUI.
“The classes are large enough that you’re stepping away from high school, but they’re not so large that you’re lost in the numbers,” says Khan. “Make sure you form those relationships with professors.”
Khan is also a member of the award-winning IUPUI chapters of Alpha Lambda Delta and Phi Eta Sigma honor societies.
“You know the people that are in ALD/PES are in it because they want to give back to the community, and it’s a nice group of people to be around,” says Khan. “College is what you make of it, and it’s important to go in with positivity and make the most out of your experience.”