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  Since her childhood, Shanta Boddapti had been moved by human suffering and disease. She was motivated to find out how diseases happen. Having a scientist in the family (her father) had triggered her love for research and a firm belief that science is the key to ending suffering and disease.

In due course, Shanta decided to pursue a career in science and uncover the mechanisms of disease progression and novel therapeutics. She did her PhD in antibody-based therapeutics for Alzheimer's disease and even got a patent for the specific antibody that she built.

However, Shanta moved on to cancer biology when she realised how big the disease is, and continues to work in this field even today, with Dr. Joe Gray, Chair of the Department of Bioengineering at the Oregon Health and Science University, Portland, USA.

The Aditya Birla Group Scholarship opened the doors for Shanta. It gave her the ticket to a top institution in India. Meeting like-minded students and interacting with thought leaders from various fields inspired her to follow her own dream - that of doing biomedical research.

Even today, Shanta cherishes the words of encouragement and support she had received from the some of the brightest minds in India, who were a part of the scholarship interview committee.
The Aditya Birla Group Scholarship has been invaluable at every stage of her career - from the time she applied to graduate school right up to the time she did her doctoral studies. The scholarship helped convince her mentors and faculty about her commitment to biomedical research and ultimately got her a graduate fellowship at the Fulton School of Engineering under their diversity initiative. It also supported her PhD at Arizona State University.

In her own life, Shanta lives by the mantra that we must "dream big if we are to achieve anything and that there is no alternative to hard work". She urges you to follow it too.

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