Wed, Feb 29, 2012 - Page 2 News List

College graduate turns down lucrative job in medicine to be forensic scientist

By Chang Hsieh-sheng  /  Staff Reporter

A 25-year-old Central Police University department of forensic science graduate has turned down a lucrative career as a medical doctor for the chance to put her skills to the service of justice as a female second lieutenant at the forensic science center.

Tsai Ya-hua (蔡雅樺), who graduated from Ying Hai High School in Greater Tainan, turned down a hard-earned admission to Kaohsiung Medical University’s school of medicine in 2006.

To the surprise of many, Tsai instead chose to major in the forensic science department at the Central Police University, despite a traditional perception that admission into a medical school guarantees a “golden career.”

Tsai’s unusual decision was ridiculed by acquaintances and relatives, who described her decision as “foolish,” and said the main goal of most hard-working students was to gain admission to a medical school, while she had just rashly turned down such an exceptional opportunity.

However, Tsai said her uncle, a police officer, supported her decision, adding that her parents also expressed respect for her resolve in entering the Central Police University.

Tsai said that as she was preparing for the college entrance exam, she became a fan of the US TV series CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, which details criminal investigations.

While following the show, Tsai began to yearn for a career in law enforcement.

Tsai said the life of a doctor would inevitably confront her with tremendously difficult life-and-death situations and responsibilities, but the job itself would be mostly dull and high-pressure.

Compared with the lucrative field of medicine, law enforcement would pay less, but would be stable and secure, Tsai said.

Although the real-life job of a police officer is not as fascinating as that depicted on TV, the sense of achievement that comes along with solving crimes using forensic science would be delightful, Tsai said.

Tsai said she did not regret her decision and had also encouraged young high-school students who recently completed their college entrance exam to fill in their university preference cards out of personal interests, not society’s expectations.

Translated by Stacy Hsu, Staff Writer

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