California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

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Minority Community Health

Student Explains Why He Wants to Enter Medical School.

Sophomore Daniel Valencia hopes to open his own clinic for the needy.

Among the thousands of students at the CSU East Bay campus, a select amount succeed in their respective fields of study.

The brightest, most passionate and hardest working individuals tend to reap the benefits of their efforts both on and off campus. Sophomore Daniel Valencia is among the select few who have found much success in only two years of being at this campus.

A resident of Redwood City and graduate of Menlo-Atherton High School, Valencia arrived for his freshman year in 2009, immediately beginning his major in the pre-medical field while exploring the opportunities available to him. Just prior to his arrival, Valencia had attended the Summer Medical and Dental Education Program (SMDEP) at UCLA, preparing him for the demanding pre-medical road ahead.

“What we did over there was pretty much presentations about how a lot of people are minorities and they’re underserved when it comes to healthcare,” Valencia said.

Valencia is the only member of his family in colllege, keeping him motivated to pursue his dream of becoming a doctor.

“I decided to do a career to show everyone back at home that I have what it takes to be successful in life that’s one of the reasons,” Valencia said.

“Another reason is because I do like to help people around, I would like to be a role model and I’ve always been around doctors since my uncle’s a doctor, one of my uncles is a scientist so I think I have that in my blood.”

During his freshman year, Valencia began demonstrating leadership ability in the classroom and with extracurricular activities when he founded Club Fuego! which bases its existence on dancing music such as salsa.

He is currently the president of P.A.W. or Peer Advocates for Wellness and continues to explore different ways to get involved.

“Now I’m figuring out that the more and the closer I get to health education the more I like it,” Valencia said.

Valencia strives to be a campus icon and student leader while at CSUEB and is always willing to share his goals and ideas while an undergraduate student.

“One goal that I would like to accomplish is to become well-known in this school, not becoming popular because I’m the cool guy or I’m just cute or anything like that, but to demonstrate to people where I’m coming from and make them understand of my knowledge and what I’m capable of doing,” Valencia said.

During his involvement on campus Valencia has come across additional aspirations he would like to accomplish and pursue as a career. His biggest goal is to start his own clinic with free healthcare for the underserved minorities.

He is currently keeping himself busy each summer by attending summer programs that provide him with the tools necessary to succeed in medical school.

“During my last quarter as a sophomore I’m doing a summer program at Stanford which is a mentoring program where they go in-depth for the application process for medical school, we learned study skills, worked on personal statements, did mock interviews and learned about classes that medical school students take,” Valencia said.

“I have just recently found out that I got into the [University of] Michigan summer enrichment program for public health where I’m going to learn whether public health is the way to go or if I should stick to clinical stuff,” Valencia said.

Out of thousands of faces in the crowd, Valencia has demonstrated his skills and capabilities until all his goals are attained. He is one of the many faces that make CSUEB a better campus and an individual whose passion for the medical field and compassion for those in need look to take him far in life.

“I do see myself becoming great in this life. I do see myself being an MD.”

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