Dorit's Open Road

  • INTERVIEWED BY:

    Team T.B.D.

  • INTERVIEW LOCATION:

    Houston, TX

  • AIRED ON:

    Public Television: Season 10

  • ON DVD:

DORIT DONOVIEL

Deputy Chief Scientist
National Space Biomedical Research Facility

“You hit the roof, the ceiling and you don't feel like you can grow anymore. It's really scary, but I think you have to venture out into a new direction because if you're going to continue in that place you're going to become resentful and you're going to become really unhappy.”

INTERESTS:

Medicine Science

THEMES DISCUSSED:

Education Fear Opportunity Self-Reflection Choices Struggle Perseverance Failure Passion Goals Success

FOUNDATION:

Problem-Solving

TAGS:

being open, biology, change, chemistry, college, comfort zone, first generation, fun, grad school, growth, happiness, health care, immigrant, Israel, nerd, space, stagnant, stuck, technology, trapped

BIOGRAPHY:

  • Immigrated to the U.S. from Israel at age 11; was an "awkward kid," had an accent, "didn't dress right."
  • Retreated into her studies; realized she was a smart kid, a good student, took pride in that.
  • Knew she wanted to go into biology when she had to dissect a cow heart in high school-loved it, understood how it worked, explained it to others.
  • Started working at a pharmaceutical company; while networking, she was offered a position at the National Space Biomedical Research Facility.
  • Felt like she had "stagnated" after eight years at the pharmaceutical company, so immediately took this new opportunity.
  • The research facility tries to innovate ways to foster life in space; along the way, it also revolutionizes life for people in rural areas.
  • Says the biggest mistake students make is to continue studying things they don't love: "you end up with a Ph.D. in chemistry and you're miserable."
  • "If you're not excited to every day you come to work, stop. It's okay to stop"; says she's grown the guts to walk away if she's not happy.

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