My name is Jacqueline. You can call me Jacqui.
I am a pre-med student at Tulane University in the glittering city of New Orleans, Lousiana. I am 21 years young and next year will be my senior year of college. I hope to go to medical school after college and after a gap year… or maybe two. I am a sociology major and proud member of the Newcomb Scholars Program.
The Newcomb Scholars Program is a selective honors program with a focus on challenging interdisciplinary learning and leadership skills. The scholars are made up of “a community of diverse thinkers, leaders, and activists” that work to empower, embolden, and support one another throughout our academic endeavors and beyond. To learn more about the Newcomb Scholars Program, the application process, or some of my fellow or alumn Scholars, click here!
This summer, I plan to intern with The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) in their Long Island, New York office. I got involved with JDRF as a 16-year-old after having been diagnosed with Juvenile (Type 1) Diabetes. It was a not-so-sweet 16. I did, however, make lasting friendships and connections that I still hold today. I started my advocacy work with the foundation by fundraising for JDRF, at first, and then I went on to start awareness programs about Type 1 Diabetes.
My mission regarding awareness was primarily to distinguish fact from fiction when analyzing the differences between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes. When I was first diagnosed with Type 1, misconceptions about the disease perpetuated by the media lead me to believe that my ailment was deserved because it was my fault. After discovering that Type 1 Diabetes is an autoimmune, unpreventable and incurable disease, I became determines to teach others the same. Raising awareness for Type 1 Diabetes also turned out to be a great way to ring in donations from people in my community who previously may not have known what Juvenile Diabetes truly is. To learn more about diabetes, JDRF, or how to get involved visit the JDRF website for helpful information on all thing Type 1.
As a Newcomb Scholar, I am frequently surrounded by people who are passionate learners and have an appreciation for education in all of its various forms. Whether I am tutoring others through the Goldman Center, engaging in hands-on research during laboratory hours, immersing myself in service-learning projects abroad, studying with my fellow Scholars, volunteering on or off campus, or simply listening to a lecture, I have come to appreciate the unique perspectives that different educational experiences provide. Unfortunately, this reality is not true for all who partake in the education system in the United States. When Teach for America reached out to me this past Spring, I had never heard of the organization before. After researching the corps, I discovered that their primary goal is to provide an equal educational opportunity to all children in the U.S.—an issue that has long bothered me. In many of my sociology seminars about epistemology and whomknowledge is for, I have come to understand that knowledge is produced by and for the privileged.
As a pre-med student, I decided to major in sociology and study the sciences so that I could better understand the diverse lives that my various patients may lead. I study sociology in hopes that I can offer my patients equal treatment despite their shape, size, color, or socioeconomic background. To do this, I know I must communicate with and teach my patients how to be medically literate so that they can empower themselves to make their own informed decisions about their health.
I have several goals I wish to accomplish during my internship this summer. One of these goals is to enhance my public speaking skills so that I am better equipped to respond quickly to questions and answer them with confidence and eloquence in front of an audience. When volunteering at the JDRF Long Island office last summer, I was given the opportunity to present at JDRF fundraising award ceremonies and I was even interviewed by a local radio station, WBAB. WBAB questioned me about my work with JDRF, my non-profit company (Jewels by Jax, @Jewels_By_Jax on Instagram) in which all proceeds go to JDRF, as well as the foundation’s upcoming events. I hope to be given more opportunities like this one so that I may practice my public speaking.
Another goal of mine for this summer is to better my event planning organization skills. As the rising vice president of SURJ (Students United for Reproductive Justice), event coordination will be one of my main duties. SURJ is the pro-choice group on Tulane’s campus. We focus on inclusivity, intersectionality, sex education and all things related to reproductive health, freedom, and justice. I hope working with JDRF in organizing their summer fundraisers will allow me to practice in terms of event planning. In doing so, I also hope to have more exposure to Microsoft Excel. As a sociology major, I seldom ever use Excel. SPSS is the only format similar to excel that I have worked with since entering college. I would love to have a greater understanding of the program and be able to familiarize myself with it so I may use it in my everyday life for budgeting, time management, etc. The JDRF office uses excel for several organizational purposes such as to budget donations or list donor information.
Another goal I hope to accomplish is to enhance my leadership skills by being more confident in my independence when conflict arises (as opposed to having to seek my boss out to resolve an issue). I hope that talking to constituents on the phone will expose me to various types of conflicts and tasks that I must try to resolve/complete based on my own knowledge. When planning events, I must work to coordinate with several vendors and properly allocated different duties to my fellow interns. And, last but certainly not least, my overarching goal for the summer is to improve my overall time management skills. Juggling summer classes, my internship, and my volunteer work at Last Hope Animal Shelter, I must learn how to organize my limited time in the most efficient way possible. Having Type 1 Diabetes, I must also factor time in to eat meals and snacks throughout my busy days in order to avoid low blood sugars. I hope my fellow Type 1 Diabuddies working alongside me in my internship office can better advise me on how to manage work, school, and diabetes most effectively.
I am excited to embark on my internship with JDRF this summer and immerse myself in the many adventures this learning experience is certain to hold. I am preparing myself for summer classes as much as possible in advance so that I can focus on my internship and school, respectively. I cannot wait to be reunited with the JDRF staff from last summer and from years previous. I look forward to seeing what great ideas and events JDRF has in store for the upcoming fall and winter seasons.