Profiles of Excellence, in their own words...

Terra D. Irons, Ph.D.

Posted: March 7th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Where are you from?
Hampton, VA
Where are you currently?
I work in Washington, DC and live in Alexandria, VA.
What year did you graduate?
2006
What was your major?
Chemistry
Do you have any advanced degrees?
Ph.D. in Toxicology
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
Toxicologist, Post-Deployment Health, Department of Veterans Affairs
I consult with Congress on environmental exposures experienced during deployment that may cause long-term illness/injury.
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
DNIMAS is a full scholarship program that aims to prepare minorities to get advanced degrees in STEM fields. It includes a rigorous curriculum and peer tutoring and mentoring, and it also emphasizes summer research both on and off campus.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
Being a part of such a prestigious program has definitely impacted my life. I was able to participate in a summer research program at the University of North Carolina that had taken many students from DNIMAS before me. That summer research experience enabled me to gain acceptance to their graduate program in Toxicology, one of the most heralded in that field in the country, where I published in the scientific peer-reviewed literature and presented my research both nationally and internationally.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
DNIMAS exposed me to being a part of a community, which taught me to help others even when there is nothing in it for me.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
(Is this a REAL question, Doug???) LOLOLOL…. I tutored for STARS… does that count?
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
My favorite memory is when DSA threw a costume party that spanned half of the 3rd floor in Lee Smith. We got in trouble ofcourse, but it was definitely a lot of fun!
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
What I liked least about DNIMAS was the added pressures put on students to perform once funding issues increased (e.g. curriculum changes, GPA requirements, peer tutoring/mentoring). Although I understand why this happened, I think that it was counterproductive in a lot of ways, and retention seemed to suffer. I think that, instead, recruitment efforts should have been strengthened to make sure that the caliber of incoming freshmen remained the same from year-to-year.
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
A lot because I wouldn’t know how to ask for help, and no matter where you want to go in life, you can’t get there on your own.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Yes, I met some of my best friends in/through DNIMAS. I also keep in contact with DNIMAS and STARS faculty on a regular basis.
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
DON’T GIVE UP! Through all the challenges and frustrations, if you can teach yourself to be disciplined enough to see it through, it will be one of the most valuable experiences of your life.


Brittney M. Nobles

Posted: January 27th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Where are you from?
Michigan
Where are you currently?
Atlanta
What year did you graduate?
2011
What was your major?
Chemistry
Do you have any advanced degrees?
Not yet, but it is coming.
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
Doctor of Pharmacy; Mercer University; and in the process of securing a place in the joint pharm.d/ph.d program.
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
It is a program that allows students the opportunity to advance. Yes, the program offers a free science-based education, but it is more than that. DNIMAS provides options and perspective to students. The program provides a secure family for anyone who is willing to abide by a few simple rules. Lol
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
Upon entering college, I had other plans after graduation that did not include professional school; my interests were in the arts. However, I had professors that urged me to continue with my schooling and reach for something higher than just an undergraduate degree. I studied profusely, enough to graduate as number one in the 2011 graduating class with a 4.0 GPA. Additionally, the program promoted post-graduate education, and now I am in pharmacy school.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
There were many things that that DNIMAS showed me that I was already privileged know; however. I cannot think of a particular instance where the program was a hindrance.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
Being that I am in a sorority-Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.-I participated in a myriad of Greek activities. I loved spending time with my friends and doing cultural activities, such as going to plays (which were all paid for by the Honors College).
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
My favorite moment was second semester of senior year, all of it. It was such a beautiful and emotional time, especially closer to the end. This is when I made the realization that I’ll miss the comfortableness that DNIMAS provided tremendously.
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
APS!!! Also, I did not like that we could not chose our roommates or where we lived.
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
I would have a bill for my schooling. Also, I do not believe that I would have attended NSU. I would have missed out on so many cherished experiences and friendships.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Of course. Being that I was with my DNIMAS family all day, every day, it would be difficult not to make friends. I still communicate with so many people, and I plan to always maintain those friendships.
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
Don’t stress out about all the rules and protocols. In retrospect, they’re not that bad. Also, don’t forget to have fun. Undergrad is not that difficult compared to the next steps after NSU. Go out, enjoy being care-free. These are some of the best years if you allow them to be. Don’t be a hermit and only study; just maintain that 3.2 GPA! And lastly remember to “Behold, the Green and Gold!”


Nancy Gegbe

Posted: May 3rd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

 

Where are you from?
Mesquite, TX
Where are you currently?
Miami, FL
What year did you graduate?
2007
What was your major?
Chemistry:Pre-Med
Do you have any advanced degrees?
M.S. in Biochemistry at University of New Hampshire
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
2nd year medical student at Ross University School of Medicine
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
DNIMAS stands for Dozoretz National Institute for Mathematics and Applied Sciences.  It offers a full scholarship to promising students who are interested in these fields and have the plans to pursue professional degrees.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
DNIMAS to me was like a boot camp that trains you to fight in war.  It gave me the tools not just to survive but to conquer what may seem impossible.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
It helped me to be focused on a task, not be discouraged and to admit when you need help.  Learning this saved me from so many hardships.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
DNIMAS student association, NSU Dance Theatre, Majestic movements at Gethsemane Fellowship Baptist Church, Pre-Med Society just to name a few.
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
My favorite memory was the spring banquet my senior year.  It made me realize that I met so many great people and that I had reached one of my goals in life.
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
I didn’t really like the study sessions so much because I can’t really study with a lot of people around me.
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
I would be in debt and I probably would not have the education and the knowledge that I have today.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Yes
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
Do not take this scholarship for granted.  It is a blessing to be paid to go to school for something that you are passionate about.  Many people would love to be in your shoes and I did not realize that until my friends from back home were struggling to go to school and to make ends meet.  This scholarship is a blessing and appreciate the time that you have with one another because you cannot make it by yourself.  Stay encouraged and encourage each other.

Akia Scruggs

Posted: April 27th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »
Where are you from?
Columbus, Ohio
Where are you currently?
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
What year did you graduate?
2009
What was your major?
Chemistry:Pre-Med
Do you have any advanced degrees?
Not yet…a work in progress
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
I am a first-year PhD student at Louisiana State University in the Kinesiology Department
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
DNIMAS is a program that nurtures your educational development. It does not require anything from you that you would or should not otherwise expect from yourself. The program is what you make of it; you reap what you invest.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
DNIMAS also increased my mental and spiritual maturity, helped me learn more about myself and my intellectual capacity. I had to learn how to budget my funds to wash clothes, get groceries, etc. so that I can now handle living in graduate housing/an apartment. DNIMAS also gave me the opportunity to give back to my community through the mentorship/community service requirements.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
I tried to come into DNIMAS with an open mind and was willing to work hard. From that investment, I gained the following professionally: better networking skills, five internships in four years, how to present scientific posters, and how to present scientific research to a diverse audience.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
I was a part of the Pre-med Society, Chemistry Club, American Chemical Society NSU student Affiliate chapter, and Beta Kappa Chi.
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
I have a few. Ashley Davison screaming “DNIMAAAAAAA!!!” whenever she saw one of us DNIMIANS anywhere oncampus. The “D-Unit” and “UrpLaFamilia” that formed my freshman and sophomore year. My third favorite memory is learning calculus with Clifford Denize in Lee Smith’s lobby. Good times. He definitely helped me believe in myself mathematically; best guy friend ever.
My last great DNIMAS memory had to be freshman guys playing cards 24/7 in the lobby or 24-hour room.
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
DNIMAS is a family for those who want it to be; not everyone wanted to be “family”. My class was very cliquey.
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
First, I might have more loans. Second, I would not be the person I am today; I am a better version of myself.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Yes, I still talk to my bestie, Ms. Ariel James, and keep in contact with others via Facebook mostly.
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
Cherish all your time in DNIMAS. Go to all the study sessions and STARS; get all the tutoring you can get; ask the upperclassmen for advice. Sit in or at least close to the front of the class in every class; do not fall asleep in class. Give everyday your all and do not cheat on anything. If you do not take DNIMAS seriously, who will take you seriously….think about it. This is the best ticket; trust me. Everyone I know who were DNIMAS and did not make it regretted it; do not let that person be you.

Doreen Onipede Jackson

Posted: April 3rd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Where are you from?
Fuquay Varina, NC
Where are you currently?
Bethesda, MD
What year did you graduate?
2009
What was your major?
Chemistry:Pre-Med
Do you have any advanced degrees?
No
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
I am currently in the United States Air Force obtaining my medical degree from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS).
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
DNIMAS is a full-ride scholarship program that grants an opportunity for students to obtain their Bachelor’s degree.  This program is for those interested in pursuing a degree in the Sciences. Not only does this program provide a great educational program for young students, it also provides a family atmosphere that is conducive for young students to succeed at the university level.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
The staff of DNIMAS and the upperclassmen who served as my mentors encouraged me to participate in summer internships.  These experiences helped me to set future career goals. Guidance from the DNIMAS staff and other DNIMAS alumni also helped in develop a path which would help me to achieve my goals.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
DNIMAS aided in creating a network of scholars.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
I pledged Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.  I was also a member of the American Association of University Women(AAUW), Student Ambassadors. I also tutored in the STARS and ACCESS tutoring programs, mentored in the DNIMAS program.
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
My favorite DNIMAS memory occurred during my Junior year. I was having a very hard semester and was considering dropping a course in order to maintain my scholarship.  If it was not for the DNIMAS  staff who continued to encourage me and and push me to finish out the semester, I would not have graduated with my scholarship. I will forever be indebted to those who encouraged me to fight through hard times in order to enjoy the the good one afterwards.
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
I do not think that this program instills enough pride into its students.  Many students who feel empowered by being a part of DNIMAS gained this from seeing other students who showed them the prestige associated with it.
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
I would be in a lot of debt, and would not have a network of friends that could continue to support me throughout my future endeavors.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Yes
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
Reach for the moon and you will land among the stars. Have pride in knowing that you are a DNIMAS scholar.

Reach for the moon and you will land among the stars. Have pride in knowing that you are a DNIMAS scholar.