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“I want to show everybody that a scientist is not just an old straight white man …”

Meet Emily

One of the big reasons I chose to go to UTSA was the community. I knew I wanted to go somewhere that I respected both my identity as a Hispanic person and also my identity as a queer person.

I’m part of the ESTEEMED program which is an NIH/federally-funded program that helps students their freshman and sophomore year grow as researchers and scholars. Because of this, I’ve had a great opportunity to work with Dr. Soo Chan Lee in his lab throughout the school year and into the summer. I’ve had I’ve also had the opportunity to present my research at various undergraduate research showcases which I found really fun and really encouraging and engaging.

I’ve also I’m also part of the Honors College, and I’m very grateful for all the resources they provide — from financial assistance to internships to even like the simpler things about how to take care of your mental health in college. This upcoming academic year I will be the secretary for the American Society for Microbiology chapter on campus. and I’m really excited to grow the engagement and excitement for microbiology among the student body.

As a whole, UTSA is very student centered and wants to lift up student voices and really make an impact in the community. I’m eternally grateful for all the opportunities I’ve had in just my first year and excited to see what happens next.

major: Microbiology & Immunology

year: Junior

hometown: Katy, Texas