Great Graduates: Sena Saygili, Trinity University

Saygili looks to bridge the gap between Eastern and Western medicine

Trinity University – Sena Saygili is officially a graduate of Trinity University, but she isn’t putting the books down yet.

Saygili is heading to The University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston to start Medical School in July.

“I would really love either neurology or gastroenterology or even a mix of both I think would be very interesting,” Saygili said.

Medicine has always been the path Saygili has wanted to go down. That path started when she was a little kid. Although she was born in the United States, she lived in Turkey for a few years because that’s where her parents are from. While in Turkey, Saygili noticed a different trend when treating the sick — there was a focus on healing, rather than treating the symptoms.

“I think that’s kind of what drove my need to go into medicine and this desire to kind of bridge the gap between not just Turkey and America, but also the Eastern and Western side of medicine,” said Saygili.

Fast forward about a decade and Saygili found herself in her freshman year at Trinity University.

“What I loved about Trinity, the second I stepped foot on campus was the small community,” Saygili said.

But during the second semester of her freshman year, the tight-knit community she came to love was taken away from her. It was March 2020 and COVID-19 shut everything down.

“The shift to online was one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done,” said Saygili.

Despite the tough transition during the pandemic, Saygili says she was able to stay positive and focus on her end goal, getting to medical school.

While at Trinity, Saygili was a part of the organization, Tigerthon. They put on fundraisers to help raise money for kids being treated in local hospitals.

“Just last year I think we raised over $31,000, which we were really happy about because even though COVID came as an obstacle, we really didn’t want to let it interfere with the things that we do here for the kids,” Saygili said.

Earlier this year, Saygili also helped raise money for her home country after it suffered a devastating earthquake. She says she’s grateful none of her family members were seriously injured in the earthquake but still wanted to do all she could to help those in need.

Saygili says Turkey will also remain in her heart and it’s evident by the necklace she wears every day.

“This is a necklace that I got from Turkey. Not only does it help me remember and stay connected with my family, my roots back at home, but it also allows me to remember what I grew up wanting to do and where I’m heading., and that’s medicine,” said Saygili.

About the Author:

Halee Powers is a KSAT producer primarily focused on digital newscasts and events.