The York University Magazine

YorkU December 2010

The alumni magazine of York University

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Mind without Borders Alina Beliavsky Faculty of Science & Engineering GPA: 9.0 The day Alina Beliavsky dissected a fetal pig in high school and examined the digestive system, she dropped business studies for biology. “I thought it was so interesting to see how things work together,” says the 20-year-old biology major. Beliavsky was two when her parents applied for visas from Ukraine to Israel and 10 when they moved again with their two daughters to peaceful Canada. The family settled in midtown Toronto where Beliavsky was soon speaking flawless English and coming nearly top of her class. In high school, the girl who likes arguing joined the debating club. “It gets your blood running,” says the York debater. She thrives under pressure and lets off steam doing karate, playing ultimate Frisbee and watching “How I Met Your Mother”. What does the future hold? To the summer lab assistant who has tracked and analyzed eye movements, neuroscience looks appealing. So does academia. But right now medicine trumps both. The Mount Sinai Hospital Emergency Department vol- unteer, who normally commutes from home in Maple, rented a downtown sublet this past summer to buy more time to prep for the Medical College Admission Test. One day she may be a pediatrician helping refugees with Doctors Without Borders. Never Satisfied Maxwell Serebryanny Schulich School of Business GPA: 8.85 Don’t be fooled by Maxwell Serebryanny. The 19-year-old from Thornhill may look and sound like a featherweight, but one day he intends to make millions as a corporate or tax lawyer, a heavyweight on Wall Street. The adored first-born of Russian immigrants got the idea from a John Grisham novel when he was 12. “Wow,” he thought, “lawyers can make a lot of money.” In high school, the gifted student ran math and Scrabble clubs, edited the student newspaper and came first in every class. He entered York at 16 with irresistible scholarships and these days makes top dollar as a prized tutor, offers free group lessons, and created and oversees a helpful career- oriented website for classmates. This summer, Serebryanny doggedly completed 60 LSAT practice tests to boost his 95 percentile to 99.7 and qualify for Harvard Law School, the ticket to a lucrative job in New York. “I’ll get there,” says the Donald Trump fan who commutes in a Pontiac Vibe, never misses a TV reality show (“my guilty pleasure”) and listens to rap and hip hop. “I’m a perfectionist, I’m ambitious and I always like to be the best. I am never satis- fied with where I’m at.” Bright light, big dream. YorkU December 2010 15

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