Student Spotlights

    • Saakshi Thukral

      Saakshi Thukral

      Saakshi Thukral

      Saakshi Thukral

      Personalized

      Saakshi Thukral is a junior in the Honors College’s Personalized Pathway, majoring in neuroscience with minors in both biology and chemistry. She is also in the Accelerated Bachelors/Masters Program (ABM) in Public Health with a concentration in health behavior. During the summer of her freshman year, she received an Honors College Presidential Summer Fellowship which supported and allowed her to complete her current project in the lab.

      With the Personalized Pathway, Saakshi wanted to explore her diverse interests that extended beyond science and develop a holistic collegiate experience. Since her admission, she has learned about the science behind communication, increased her awareness of the public health epidemics occurring on a global scale and participated in a one-year intensive laboratory research program that served as the backbone for her present research experience.

      Saakshi’s participation in the Honors College has refined her leadership and communication skills, while introducing her to a vibrant community of future leaders who motivate her to work hard every day. Most recently, this has been reflected through her experience participating in the World Conference of Undergraduate Research (WCUR) where she traveled with other Honors College students to Oldenburg, Germany to present her research and placed first in the competition. Through this trip, she experienced the German culture, while learning international perspectives on research in America.

      Aside from her studies, Saakshi is involved in many organizations on campus and in the community. She is an Honors SMART Leader (Student Mentor And Retreat Team), Honors Ambassador, a Neuroscience Ambassador, and dancer for the UAB Indian dance team – Birmingham’s Blazin’ Bhangra, which celebrates the Punjabi culture. She recently started a chapter of the Kidney Disease Screening and Awareness Program, serves as a co-director for the Alabama Brain Bee and is a Promoter of Wellness (POW). Off-campus, she volunteers with Children’s of Alabama, Magic Moments Birmingham, and Pathways.

      When she’s not eating her favorite food – hummus – you can follow her as she explores cities through coffee shops and unique restaurants on her food blog on Instagram, @aesthetically.yummy.

      More About the Honors College

      The Honors College offers you the opportunity to select a curriculum that best suits your goals and interests. Set Your World On Fire and explore your honors future today!

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    • Michael Ho

      Michael Ho

      Michael Ho

      Specialized - GCL

      Michael Ho is a sophomore in the Honors College’s Global and Community Leadership (GCL) Honors Program, double majoring in chemistry and French. Service learning has always been his passion, so he wanted to choose a curriculum that would broaden his global perspective and enhance his cultural humility to give back to the local community through a multitude of ways. Ultimately, he chose GCL to gain additional insight on global issues in a discussion-based setting and become an advocate in the Birmingham area, while learning about the rich historical past of the city. Over the summer, he put some of his college experience to the test when he ran an Instagram business page that sold vintage clothes and collector’s items of retro brands.

      While in the Honors College, Michael has participated in various programs, where he has introduced the Provost, spoke on multiple panels and met prospective students and their families to help them finalize their decision to apply for the Honors College. He even helped some of the professors develop their curriculum for honors seminars.

      In addition to serving as an Honors SMART Leader (Student Mentor And Retreat Team) and Honors Ambassador within the Honors College, Michael also serves as a TrailBlazer, Director of Campus Relations in the Undergraduate Student Government Association (USGA) and officer in Alpha Epsilon Delta (AED), which is a Pre-Health Honors Society.

      When Michael isn’t studying or helping with events, you can catch him playing basketball, soccer, backpacking/hiking/enjoying the outdoors or thrift shopping.

      More About the Honors College

      The Honors College offers you the opportunity to select a curriculum that best suits your goals and interests. Set Your World On Fire and explore your honors future today!

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    • Juhee Agrawal

      Juhee Agrawal

      Juhee Agrawal - Science and Technology Honors Program

      Juhee Agrawal

      Specialized STH

      Juhee Agrawal is a senior in the Honors College’s Science and Technology Honors Program (STH), double majoring in neuroscience and Spanish. She chose the STH program because she wanted to learn how to think scientifically about the world around her and develop an independent role in a research lab. Juhee is grateful for the collaboration and community facilitated by the students and faculty advisors. Through these collaborative connections, she has served as a research assistant in Dr. Yogesh Dwivedi’s lab on depression and suicide neurobiology for the last three years.

      Since joining UAB, Juhee’s volunteer journey has osmosed into various organizations, both on and off campus. As a freshman, she began volunteering with Active Minds, a student organization that focuses on destigmatizing the conversation around mental health. She also serves as a Peer Mentor and Chair of Volunteering/Study Groups on the Student Executive Council in the Honors College’s STH program. Juhee previously served in leadership positions within the Honors College as an Honors Ambassador and Honors SMART Leader (Student Mentor And Retreat Team).

      Juhee has developed a strong academic reputation on campus through her involvement in the Honors College. With the help of Dr. Robin Lanzi and Dr. Angela Stowe in the Honors College Faculty Fellows program, she created a new Mental Health Ambassadors program, which trains UAB students how to conduct promotion outreach and develop presentations/campaigns on mental health. With the skills learned through the STH program, Juhee has co-authored two publications in her research lab, and she will complete a thesis in this lab before graduating.

      Juhee completed a month-long service-learning experience in Cusco, Peru, where she observed and volunteered at one of their community health clinics. This experience also helped her improve her Spanish-speaking skills and learn more about the Peruvian healthcare system.

      Juhee is truly a blazer at heart. She always travels with a small Blaze figurine so she can take pictures of him in different places.

      More About the Honors College

      The Honors College offers you the opportunity to select a curriculum that best suits your goals and interests. Set Your World On Fire and explore your honors future today!

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    • Mary Anne Powell

      Mary Anne Powell

      Mary Anne Powell

      Specialized - UHP

      Mary Anne Powell is a junior in the Honors College’s University Honors Program (UHP), double majoring in public health and Spanish. Initially, she did not want to attend UAB since she was a Birmingham native and felt she would lack the true “college experience.” After careful consideration, she chose UAB and interviewed for UHP, and immediately knew she had to join. The small, tight-knight and intellectual community UHP encompasses has provided unmatched opportunities for Mary Anne. She has taken a deep dive into relevant topics and met incredible professors and experts that have opened her eyes to endless possibilities in her post-graduate career.

      Once Mary Anne joined UHP, she hit the ground running. With the advice of her advisor, she applied for leadership positions within the Honors College. She not only joined but moved up in leadership in the Honors College Leadership Council (HCLC), Honors SMART Leaders (Student Mentor And Retreat Team), and Honors Ambassadors. UHP and the honors organizations have given her self-confidence, professional skills, community involvement, exposure to health professionals, and top-notch advising that has set her on the best academic path to graduate in four years.

      Mary Anne is applying her classroom knowledge by volunteering at Equal Access Birmingham, which is a clinic that serves under/uninsured individuals in the community through the UAB School of Medicine. She is responsible for taking the patients’ vitals and preparing them for physician appointments, along with filling prescriptions and taking inventory of the drugs. She is also a translator for Spanish-speaking patients, where she translates for the physician and patient during check-ups and physical therapy appointments.

      Mary Anne completed a semester-long exchange program in Spring 2019 at the University of Jaén in Spain, where she will receive a UHP seminar credit for the courses she completed.

      Once her undergraduate studies are complete, Mary Anne plans to find a fellowship that will allow her to study in another country. She is also contemplating applying for the English-Teaching Fulbright Program.

      When she finds spare time, Mary Anne loves backpacking, hiking, and camping – really anything outdoors. She also enjoys finding new music and hearing local artists.

      Due to her time in UHP so far, she can’t imagine being anywhere other than UAB.

      More About the Honors College

      The Honors College offers you the opportunity to select a curriculum that best suits your goals and interests. Set Your World On Fire and explore your honors future today!

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    • Reilyn Intemann

      Reilyn Intemann

      Reilyn Intemann

      Personalized

      Reilyn Intemann is a sophomore in the Honors College’s Personalized Pathway, majoring in pre-nursing. During one of her college visits on campus, she met with an advisor who explained the program and outlined the various paths she could take to obtain honors credits. Choosing the Personalized Pathway was the most flexible and the best fit for her academic program and goals. Based on her academic achievement, she has received a merit scholarship.

      The Honors College has given Reilyn multiple opportunities to explore career options and find her true passions through various volunteer organizations and specific honors classes. As a Trailblazer, she shares her love and experiences at UAB with prospective students, while helping them determine their fit on campus. She is also an Honors SMART Leader (Student Mentor And Retreat Team) in the Honors College and volunteers at Children's of Alabama. As an experienced U.S. Figure Skating Gold Medal winner for ice dance, she continues to pursue dance as a member of the Love Your Melon Campus Crew and Dance Marathon.

      Once Reilyn began her studies on the impact of volunteer work in hospital settings, it opened her eyes to the field of nursing in pediatric and critical care settings, as well as her personal impact on the staff and patient’s lives.

      In her spare time, Reilyn enjoys exploring new coffee shops around Birmingham and trying new restaurants with friends.

      More About the Honors College

      The Honors College offers you the opportunity to select a curriculum that best suits your goals and interests. Set Your World On Fire and explore your honors future today!

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    • Naqi Raza

      Naqi Raza

      Naqi Raza

      Personalized

      Naqi Raza is a sophomore in the Honors College’s Personalized Pathway, majoring in biomedical engineering (BME) on a pre-medical track. When he came to UAB, he was unsure of what he wanted to do with his major, but knew he wanted to choose an honors program that fit his goals. With the freedom to choose a path that was unique to him, he chose honors classes and seminars that complemented his major and interests. His studies have led him to receive the Presidential and Engineering Excellence Scholarships.

      Naqi attributes the Honors College for kick-starting his involvement at UAB. He was motivated to get involved in research by participating in workshops that illustrated various opportunities at UAB. He was introduced to people that were in organizations he wanted to join in the future. By developing these connections, he joined several organizations including Pi Kappa Phi, Best Buddies, Honors College Leadership Council (HCLC), Tau Beta Pi (Engineering Honor Society) and Honors SMART Leaders (Student Mentor And Retreat Team). He was invited to join BME Honors in Spring 2019 and started a research position in the BME department in Dr. Zhang’s lab.

      With the rigorous course work in his academic program, Naqi finds time to unwind playing cricket on the weekends and with UAB’s Cricket Club. He also likes to vacation in his birth country of Pakistan every summer to keep his heart close to his culture.

      Naqi plans to do research abroad after he graduates.

      More About the Honors College

      The Honors College offers you the opportunity to select a curriculum that best suits your goals and interests. Set Your World On Fire and explore your honors future today!

      Read Student Profile

    • Maggie Phillips

      Maggie Phillips

      Maggie Phillips

      Personalized

      Maggie Dale Phillips is a junior in the Honors College’s Personalized Pathway, majoring in psychology. Not only does this curriculum allow her flexibility and control, but it allows her to focus on classes that correlate with her major and interests. As a student on the President’s List, her classroom engagement extends beyond the classroom. She helps other students adjust and succeed in their honors classes by serving in the Psychology Honors Program and as a Honors SMART Leader (Student Mentor And Retreat Team) in the Honors College.

      Through Maggie’s time in the Honors College, she has been active in cultivating her relationships, which led to a teaching assistant position and presenting original research at conferences.

      Before Maggie began her college career, she danced throughout high school and to this day, she finds time to blare music in an empty room and dance.

      More About the Honors College

      The Honors College offers you the opportunity to select a curriculum that best suits your goals and interests. Set Your World On Fire and explore your honors future today!

      Read Student Profile

    • Bradley Thigpen

      Bradley Thigpen

      Bradley Thigpen

      Personalized

      Bradley Thigpen is a junior in the Honors College’s Personalized Pathway, majoring in chemistry. Through the enriching experience the Personalized Pathway provides, he had the opportunity to customize his curriculum with a wide variety of science, humanities and service-learning courses solely within the Honors College.

      By joining the Honors College as an Honors Ambassador, Bradley serves as an advocate at various events, such as the Honors College dinners and lunches with prospective students. Giving back through the Honors College has given him many opportunities that make him proud and thankful. He also joined the Alpha Epsilon Delta Pre-Health Honor Society, Alabama Student Rural Health Association, College of Arts and Science Student Council and Chem Scholars.

      More About the Honors College

      The Honors College offers you the opportunity to select a curriculum that best suits your goals and interests. Set Your World On Fire and explore your honors future today!

      Read Student Profile

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