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Kinesiology Department


Komal Luthra, Sports Medicine 

KomalKomal Luthra is a Kinesiology major with a concentration in Sports Medicine, and a minor in Biochemistry and Cell Biology. As a pre-medical student, Komal is very passionate about diversifying her educational experience through involvement in different activities and research work.

Currently, Komal is the Student Association Internal Vice President. In this position, she oversees the standing committees, student initiatives, New Student Representative Program, and Undergraduate/Graduate Mentorship Program. Through this leadership experience, she has been able to work with other students to improve the undergraduate experience in a variety of ways.  She has taken the initiative to create and chair the Health Professions Task Force which will evaluate the pre-health professions advising and opportunities available at Rice University and find ways to make actionable improvements to better support pre-health professions students. In addition to being Internal Vice President, she is the Co-President of Healthy Grad, which is an organization that seeks to improve student wellbeing through events and education on physical activity and nutrition. She is also a member of Global Brigades, Rice Pre-Medical Society, Volunteers Around the World, and South Asian Society.

In addition to her involvement in campus organizations, she is currently working in the medical education lab under the supervision and guidance of Dr. Merlo, the Associate Dean of Health Professions. She is currently conducting a study to understand the empathy and patient-centered attitudes of physicians and undergraduate students. Her goal is to better understand how medical educators can prepare undergraduate students for medical school by providing exposure to these topics earlier on before they are placed in a highly stressful environment.

Over the years, she has shadowed many physicians in a variety of specialties including orthopedics, pediatrics, anesthesiology, and gastroenterology. She has really enjoyed learning about the holistic approach physicians take in treating patients. In the fall of 2018, she plans to attend medical school. She is very thankful for all the unique opportunities Rice has provided her to grow and develop into a well-rounded individual.