As a high school sophomore juggling both Honors Chemistry and intensive extracurricular research at the Mayo Clinic on the pharmacodynamics of various drug formulations, Ashton Body learned a valuable lesson: A scientist is anyone brave enough to ask questions. At times, the scientific field seems to be barricaded by the need for expertise and experience. But fresh perspectives and even the most basic questions can drive conversation and innovation—and while not every question or idea will be possible, the force behind them is what drives change.

Now a rising junior at Harvard College, Ashton’s goal of creating a novel drug delivery system to treat aggressive breast cancer has become an effective reality. In the process, she’s realized that a lack of experience can actually be freeing — because it allows one to dream without limitation.
Ashton Body

Ashton Body is a rising junior studying Social Anthropology and Global Health and Health Policy at Harvard College. She is passionate about the intersection between the molecular and social levels of health and disease, striving to connect social determinants to their long-term biological effects. She has conducted biomedical research at the Mayo Clinic for the past five years developing novel drug delivery systems to treat cancer. She hopes to become a physician passionate about increasing health equity and providing better, personal patient care guided by medical innovation.