I grew up in a family of health care providers and saw their nurturing and caring attitudes. As a first-generation college student, I was unsure of my path, but I knew I wanted to make a difference in my community. In the first semester of my undergraduate studies, I dedicated significant time to patient care, shadowing health care providers, and gaining knowledge about health care. Although this experience was fulfilling, I learned that clinical health care did not match my true passion. My curious mind facilitated my networking; I was introduced to public health and began coursework the following semester. During the past three years in COPH, I gained knowledge and practice, my growing passion. I admire public health and what it can do for our population.
Throughout my time at COPH, I had multiple opportunities to practice my passion; I became a certified HIV Testing Counselor, educated middle school students about public health through health education, and participated in a research study. These experiences taught me the value public health has within our communities. I appreciate public health and the members of the public health community tremendously. After the completion of my undergraduate studies, I will be attending graduate school to pursue my master's degree in public health (MPH), concentrating in Epidemiology.