Paul Hagey

Paul Hagey for Action Catalyst InspirersI was on a fast track to a Biochemistry career about 10 years ago. The semester before I was to graduate undergrad summa cum laude with a B.S. in Biochemistry, I was sitting in the office of my Biochemistry mentor Eamonn Healy, one of the coolest people I knew. We were talking somewhat casually about my future plans. With his good reputation and my interesting, original research on glutathione reductase, the human cell’s critical anti-oxidizing enzyme, I was primed to get into of the premier Ph.D. programs in the country like San Francisco State University, among others.

I told him I would not be going to graduate school in Biochemistry. He shook his head and said, more or less: “Go get your Ph.D.”

I didn’t and haven’t looked back since. Deep down, I knew it wasn’t the right thing, wasn’t true to the person I was just beginning to know. At every opportunity since then, I’ve chosen a path that feels full of integrity and character, which is not easy and often very difficult, but allows a clear head and a calm, full heart. That commitment remains rock solid as I consciously navigate the creation of a sustained, creative life.

Go with heart and there are no regrets.

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