A bit about me and the doctor I want to be:
I grew up in the remote countryside east of Fresno and much of my childhood was spent on the Cold Springs Indian Reservation. In my formative adult years, I lived and worked in an impoverished neighborhood in Fresno, CA, a city with one of the highest rates of extreme poverty in the United States. After I graduated from college I moved to Rehoboth, Namibia. My whole life I’ve danced between different worlds and adapted in diverse cultures. As a member of multiple minority groups, I know the need for competent, culturally sensitive, professional, and compassionate physicians. Which is why I envision myself serving as a physician in a poor, minority communities, like the ones that I came from. Navigating the world as an indigenous Latina from an underprivileged background I have had to practice resilience. I also understand the value of inclusion and support, they are not just talking points. These ideals are a vital part of my existence and they have given me a strong commitment to underserved people.
Why I am fundraising: (Upcoming costs $3,000 deposit + travel expenses for interviews) Click here for a break down of the Cost of Applying to Medical School - S.Kenney
My greatest challenge to becoming a physician is the high financial costs without inherent familial wealth. My family has always lived frugally, sharing what we had with extended family and having little regard for savings. My father was the sole breadwinner and while I am proud that he provided for so many of us, he fell behind on taxes when I was 12. Without my parents’ tax information, I was disqualified from financial aid and loans during my undergraduate studies. I currently live under the poverty line in one of the most expensive cities in our country, yet I was denied access to the Fee Assistance Program for medical school applications because I could not provide my parents’ tax information. Although I am driven and capable enough to fight my way past these costs, financial insecurity is an ongoing hurdle in my pursuit of higher education.
I worked to be financially independent since I was 15 and throughout my entire college career. I have taken personal loans, created fundraisers, charged credit credits, and worked to cover my educational expenses. I worry about overcoming the financial obstacles to complete this process. Without support from my community and mentors, I would not have made it this far. I am grateful for the people who have encouraged me when I felt hopeless and overwhelmed. Together, with the support of my extended network and some persistence, we will make a difference.
- Vanloan Nguyen
- Brittany Edwards
- Lenore Yousef
- Lindsey Habenicht
San Francisco, CA