Dual PharmD/MSPH student: Oliver Emmanuel Valdez
Undergraduate Experience: BS in Biology Biomedical Concentration, University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP)
“The Campbell community prioritizes
helping others and succeeding together.”
Tell us a little bit about your personal and professional experience prior to starting at CPHS.
When I was a sophomore in high school I decided to pursue a career in pharmacy. I pushed myself to become a strong candidate for pharmacy school and learned a lot about who I was as a student and as a person.
Things seemed to be going my way. I was chosen to be the team captain of the junior varsity soccer team and lead my team to win the championship. I also joined a youth church group at the San Jose Catholic Church where I met some of my best friends. I was working towards graduating with college credits and receiving The Seal of Biliteracy.
A couple of months before the Academic year ended, I came home to find out that my stepfather had been deported. It still breaks my heart to write about it, due to the love that I have for him and the many hardships that followed his sudden forced deportation. My family faced depression, anxiety, anger, housing instability, and family separation.
I started College the summer after I graduated from high school. I received the UTEP prep scholarship and soon joined the UTEP’s Pre-Pharmacy Organization (PPO). This allowed me to immerse myself in a culture of purposeful service. I served as a member for two years and Historian for one year. I joined the American Chemical Society UTEP’s Chapter. I also began to work at a community pharmacy and as an undergraduate assistant for general chemistry. Each semester I ran two, two-hour long workshops with 25 students. I also helped write Chemistry by Exploration, which was published by Leading America and sold by the University. I was a few credits away from graduating, but I decided to apply for pharmacy school as I was eager to begin my career.
Why did you choose your degree/Campbell and what benefits do you believe you are gaining or have gained from Campbell?
My main priority was to find a school where the faculty and staff genuinely cared about students. I was looking for a small class size where I would be able to interact with my professors during class. I also wanted to be at a University that offered opportunities for me to become a strong candidate for residency programs.
From the moment I stepped on Campbell’s campus, I felt a sense of belonging. That feeling was confirmed by the way faculty and staff received me. This university’s mission to prepare students for purposeful lives and meaningful service only added to the reasons why I decided to join the Campbell family.
Briefly describe your accomplishments, strengths, and passions.
Upon being accepted to the dual degree program, I was awarded the Dean’s Pharmacy Institutional Scholarship. I later received the Pharmacy Direct Aid Scholarship. During my time in the Public Health program I got to meet the amazing and hardworking people from the North Carolina Farmworker’s Project. This ended up being where I completed all of my practicum hours. I was offered the opportunity to join their team, and I feel honored to be part of an organization that works diligently to improve the health of hundreds of farmworkers in the community.
I was recently chosen to present my Capstone project, Understanding Chronically Diseased Rural Latino Farmworker’s Use of Medication and Medical Advice Obtained from Non-medical Sources, at the 2019 NCPHA Fall Educational Conference.
Please tell us what you love about Campbell and CPHS.
My favorite thing about Campbell is how inclusive faculty, staff and students are. I love the sense of belonging. The Campbell community prioritizes helping others and succeeding together.
Why should prospective students choose Campbell over other graduate and professional schools?
Every student comes from a different background. Apart from applying to a school or a program, when you apply to Campbell you are applying to a life of academic achievement and meaningful service. Faculty and staff love to see their students succeed. They will be there for you every step of the way to ensure your academic prosperity and make sure that you unleash your full potential.
Any additional information or comments?
I was born and raised in El Paso, Texas and am a native Spanish speaker. I recently completed my first year in public health and I am currently a P1. I am also the youngest of four and a first generation college student.