Pursue something that you are passionate about – that is what I learned in high school. At home, I was often engaged in conversations with my family about nutrition and health, which is where my interest started. When I found the Interdisciplinary Health Sciences program in the College of Applied Health Sciences, it was a perfect fit. I was drawn to the interdisciplinary understanding of nutrition, kinesiology, and community health. I also minored in Sociology, which helped me understand issues related to health and technologies from a global perspective.
One of my most meaningful experiences on campus was engaging in leadership positions with a cultural Greek organization. As part of the Board, I collaborated with people from various organizations such as Campus Housing and McKinley Health Center. These experiences turned into networking opportunities, which led to job opportunities. I became a Multicultural Advocate and had an internship at the McKinley Health Center, which were helpful stepping stones for my career path. These experiences helped me understand the importance of beginning my career from within the communities that I am a member of.
Now I work at Interactive Health as a Team Leading Health Coach. We travel all over different counties in Illinois providing health counseling for corporate wellness. I facilitate health counseling sessions and organize logistics of health-related events. I also serve as a medical interpreter for several Chicago hospitals, assisting English and Spanish speaking populations. My future career goals are to pursue a Master’s degree in Healthcare Administration before pursuing a leadership role in Chicago Community Clinics, providing services to meet the needs of Chicago’s most vulnerable populations.
My advice to current Illinois students is that networking is key to a well-rounded college experience. It is important to become engaged with different organizations and people. Every year, try something new! Get out of your comfort zone and get to know different circles. Eventually, opportunities will arise to integrate these circles to create new things, such as events and programs benefitting campus communities—as well as yourself.
(Last Updated: March 2016)