Tasneem Islam
November 12, 2018

This student profile is one of several originally published by the Universities at Shady Grove. You can read this and more stories, told by the students themselves, on their Student Stories page

I am a first-generation college student in the Achieving Collegiate Excellence and Success (ACES) program. ACES has helped guide me through my educational pathway. I started at Einstein High School and then went to Montgomery College (MC). While at MC I didn’t really know what I wanted to do. Upon exploring different classes at MC, I found that I really loved both my science and social science classes. I realized that being a public health student would be the best blend of the two. Also, I have always had a zeal for learning more about health and particularly love volunteering to aid underserved communities and spending time understanding inequalities that exist within today's society.

Once I decided to major in Public Health, I looked to see if it was a program offered at the Universities at Shady Grove (USG). I was very excited when I found out that the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP)offered a B.S. in Public Health Science at USG. So I applied to UMCP and selected to take my classes at USG, so I could save money by living at home and save time commuting. I have really enjoyed my small classes and interacting with my professors.

The student life at USG has also really made a difference in the quality of my education. In my first semester, I became a student ambassador for USG. As an ambassador, I am learning leadership skills and improving my public speaking skills. I also wanted to get involved in a club that would make a positive impact in the world. So I helped start a new club, The Care Package Club, where we raise funds to make care packages for vulnerable populations such as refugees in Syria and orphans in Sierra Leone. I am also an active participant in the Students Engaged in Public Health Club, which allows me to apply the things I am learning in class to real life issues.

Being involved at USG has helped me develop new skills and sculpt me as a future professional. After I graduate, I hope to find a job that allows me to research prevailing public health issues and disparities and work towards achieving health equity. I also plan to continue my education and get my Master’s in Public Health.