Skip to main content
Black in STEM


Ashleigh Pyke.

Ashleigh Pyke


Major and Degree Pursued: Biology, B.S.

Prospective Graduation Year: 2024

Current Position: Research Assistant, Preschoolers’ Adjustment and Intergenerational Risk Lab

Connect: LinkedIn | Email


What motivates you to do/pursue science and/or medicine?

When posed with the inevitable question in second grade—What do you want to be when you grow up?—my mind instantly went to doctor. Surrounded by family members in medicine, including my father, aunts, and uncles, a career as a physician was the most enticing. This idea has been reaffirmed over the years as biology emerged as my favorite subject. Then, by having the chance to get more exposure to different fields in medicine through hands-on experience and meeting other students with a similar passion through medical summer camps in high school, I was able to build my confidence in my path. Shadowing and working in health-care settings only solidified my choice. I am fortunate to have found my passion for acquiring more knowledge and understanding in the study of medicine at such a young age. As a child of Jamaican parents, my family and I return whenever feasible, as we see it as a second home. In the future, I plan to set up clinics in my parents’ hometowns in Jamaica to support the health and well-being of the community that has greatly impacted me.

What does Black History Month mean to you?

Black History Month allows for the necessary space and time for the recognition of the contributions of Black Americans throughout our history. These contributions shape the experiences I and many others share today. I am reminded of the work and decisions that my ancestors made allowing me to succeed and thrive.