South Africa & University of Cape Town, 2021
Andrea Tonelli is fundamentally a humanist who is on his way to becoming a medical doctor. His love of people and science has led him to dedicating himself to becoming a clinician-scientist, with particular interests in public health, cardiac physiology and surgery.
Andrea is currently part of the Intercalated MBChB program at the University of Cape Town, studying as a fourth year student with a BMedSci(Hons) degree in Infectious Disease & Immunology. In 2021 he plans to undertake a MSc (Medicine) in Biomaterials concurrent with the remaining clinical years of his degree. He will undertake research at the UCT start-up, Strait Access Technologies, attempting to optimise the longevity and safety of novel implanted heart valves engineered to be cost-effective for low income settings.
Andrea has served in multiple leadership roles underpinned by his love for education and teaching. He has worked as the Founding Chairperson for the Preclinical Society at the Faculty of Health Science and Founding Director of the Siyafunda Tutoring Outreach Initiative. Andrea has also given multiple talks as a special student representative to the South African Heart & Stroke Foundation. He has worked as a testing volunteer at the Tygerberg COVID-19 Testing Centre, and served as a volunteer tutor for the both UCT 100-Plus program and the Siyafunda Initiative.
Andrea’s primary interest is in global surgery. He hopes to one day build effective cardiovascular surgery programs in low resource settings, bringing life-saving care to the almost 6 billion people worldwide who lack adequate access.