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Meet our Students!

We are excited to highlight the stories of some of our PEEP participants across the nation who are striving to attend graduate and health professional programs. Only students with a current profile picture are shown. 

Please get to know our future scientists, educators, and health providers by hearing their stories and learning from their advice below!

Rodrigo

Career: Medicine

Rodrigo is a DREAMer and a beneficiary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Rodrigo grew up in East Providence, Rhode Island, after coming to the United States with his parents at 10 months of age. They have rallied and organized Dreamers in Rhode Island and Washington D.C. to push for a permanent fix for DACA recipients. As a writer, Rodrigo's commentary on immigration policy is featured in Al Jazeera, The Guardian, and The Providence Journal. Locally, Rodrigo lobbied the General Assembly and the Governor for legislation granting undocumented immigrants driver's licenses. In 2018, the state passed a law ensuring that DACA recipients would be issued driver's licenses regardless of future federal policy. Due to their work on the issue, Rodrigo was asked to introduce Governor Gina Raimondo at the bill signing. Rodrigo will graduate from the University of Rhode Island with a B.A. in Psychology and a B.A. in Data Science.

Luis

Career: Medicine

First-generation Veracruz immigrant Luis Alberto Hernandez Campos, 22, lives in sunny Arizona. Growing up, ancestors and nation were foreign. My parents brought me to the US at one year old to end poverty. They struggled to attain goals and support their growing family without financial aid. They supported the family by working hard instead of going to college. While my father worked in the fields, my mother helped my grandmother sell products at home. US National Scholarship. Financial stress reduction and learning have greatly improved my life. Student Specialist at ASU's DREAMzone for DACA, undocumented, and mixed-status students was my second job. It showed financial issues.

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Jenny

Career: Medicine

My name is Jenny Lopez. I was born in Mexico. I’m from Nashville, Tennessee. I major in Biochemistry at Middle Tennessee State University. I hope to be a Pediatrician someday.

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Delmy

Career: Medicine/PhD

My name is Delmy. I was born in Morazan, El Salvador, and I entered the US as a baby in my mother's arms. Being in the US provided various opportunities for my family and opened many doors for me. I received the first high school diploma in my family and am currently a senior in the Bioscience program at Farmingdale State College. My goal is to become an internal medicine physician who also researches preventive medicine. I also want to be able to help anyone I can with any struggles they face in being able to get a higher education.

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Diana S. Z.

Career: Physician Assistant

My name is Diana S. Z. I was born in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala, to two Peruvian parents. I moved to Peru when I was three and later came to the US after an economic crisis struck our country. I have grown up in a small town in South Jersey. I was able to become DACA the year before going into college. In college, I majored in Biochemistry/Molecular Biology with a minor in Jewish Studies. I was fortunate enough to receive many scholarships for my hard work. I graduated in 2020 with hopes to matriculate into Medical school. However, after further analysis, I decided medical school was not right for me. I aspire to be a physician assistant while working as a nursing aide on a cardiology floor in my local hospital. I hope to be able to apply in 2022.

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Abdullah

Career: Medicine, PhD

From pre-K to twelfth grade in Maryland, housing in a 2-bedroom townhouse with six family members, I anticipated economic challenges. My life changed in the fall of 12th grade when I discovered I was a DACA recipient when applying for FAFSA. After preparing for numerous scholarships and chances, I was ready to seek them. I realized that my citizenship status would immediately eliminate my scholarship, internship, and other ambitions. I realized this more in college. I was unable to qualify for most scholarship and research programs due to ineligibility, making it challenging to secure funding for higher study. As a college student on the pre-MD/PhD route, intense competition arises due to limited possibilities and high demand. Sometimes, despite being competent for a position, such as a scholarship, research post, or job, I am not eligible. I participated in the McNair Scholars Program, a research-focused program for low-income and first-generation students, for a year. After the first year, I was supposed to completely enroll in the program to obtain funding for my research. Unfortunately, I was unable to join the program as I did not qualify for federal funding for my research projects.

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Edy

Career: Medicine

Biology and Sociology Major at Providence. Interested in advancing diversity and cultural competency in the medical field.

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Exel

Career: Medicine

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Jissela Flores

Career: Medicine

I am a Peruvian-born, American-raised, Hispanic-immigrant woman. Attending university as a first-generation American was a privilege denied to many undocumented community members, so I was adamant about making the most of this opportunity. Admittedly, I continued to grapple with the uncertainty of my status and whether it would hinder my ability to pursue internships and apply for jobs. I graduated from the University of Maryland with a dual degree in (1) Biochemistry and (2) Cell Physiology & Neurobiology. Then, I was offered to complete a two-year M.S. program in Bioinformatics held at the University of Maryland sponsored by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. I was one of two students admitted to this program's inaugural class. I pursued my degrees to silence those who told me I should be afraid, apologetic, and ashamed of my status. But more importantly, these achievements belong to my undocumented community, who I turn to for strength and support at every turn.

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Flor

Career: Medicine, Postbaccalaureate program

Hi, my name is Flor. I was born in El Salvador, then moved to Los Angeles, then to Houston and finally came to Richardson for college. I am an undergraduate student at the University of Texas at Dallas. I am majoring in Neuroscience with a Business Administrator minor on the premed track. I aspire to contribute to the health field by bridging the gap between what is known and unknown through research and implementing that knowledge to enhance health for all people as a physician. I like to read, do anything fitness-related, and try new things in my free time. I also go by Flower, the English translation of my name.

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Francisca

Career: Exploring Medicine, Public Health, Physical Therapy, Physician Assistant Programs

My name is Francisca. I'm currently a first-year student at the University of California, Irvine. I'm pursuing a major in biology. I'm passionate about spreading positivity, medicine, cultural awareness, and raising awareness for mental health. I love improving my community and taking action against social injustices. While it is easy to become overwhelmed in the face of societal issues. I always see the world not for what it is but for what it could be.

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Margarida

Career: Medicine, Ph.D, Physician Assistant

I always had to help others as much as possible. My mother and grandma always gave food, rides, and emotional support. Growing raised with these principles made me who I am, but I want to reach more people and change lives, especially undocumented ones. My shadowing doctor, Dr. Silka, inspires me. He is an educated, compassionate, and proactive doctor. No matter how long he's been in the hospital or how crowded it is, he's always happy and nice to his patients. His character will inspire me as a doctor, whether I become an ER doctor or not. Along with my interest in human physiology and anatomy, I want to be a doctor. With my undergraduate experiences, I wish to influence patients and bring them to a better health path by delivering ethnically or culturally appropriate patient care.

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Gabriella

Career: Medicine, Postbaccalaureate program

My name is Gabriella, and I am originally from Cameroun. Moving to the United States has provided me with numerous possibilities to further my education. I am currently in my last year of undergrad and will graduate in the spring of 2022 with a B.S. in Biology and a Chemistry minor. I enjoy tutoring and mentoring other students of the same background to make education more accessible for all. I hope to gain medical experience to apply to a medical school. I would love to become a physician and specialize in pediatrics. As a physician in the U.S., I hope to go back to the diverse community I grew up in and help eradicate the health disparities that are so prevalent.

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Giovanny

Career: Exploring Medicine, B.S.

I'm an undocumented person, trying my hardest to graduate and pursue a career to help save people and advance the scientific industry. Through surgery or scientific/medicinal intervention, I would like to extend and enhance the lives of everyone.

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Gigi

Career: Exploring Medicine, Physician Assistant

My name is Gigi, and I immigrated to the US at the age of 1. I have lived in the US for over 21 years, and during that time, I developed a passion for immigration rights. I am currently a DACA recipient and a recent college graduate. Some of my proudest moments have been sharing my story with the New York Times, winning state and national titles in pageantry, and working in the medical field as a therapist for children on the spectrum.

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Jessica

Career: Medicine

Hi, my name is Jessica. I was born in Mexico and grew up in Greensboro, NC. I am currently working as a medical scribe at a retina clinic and volunteering as a certified medical interpreter. I graduated from Guilford College with a B.A in Biology and am an aspiring physician. My calling to medicine stems from my desire to be a compassionate provider who raises awareness of preventative medicine and advocates for accessible healthcare, particularly in underserved communities. I love hiking, exploring museums, and being around friends and family in my spare time.

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