"Do not give up on your goals. It is a long path but there is light at the end of the tunnel. Always reach out if you need assistance."
Ms. Tobongye attended SHPEP in 2020 at the University of Iowa. Since her participation in SHPEP, she graduate from Grand View University in 2021 with a bachelor's degree in Biology and minor in Chemistry and honors on a pre-medical track.
What path did you take when you first started college?
Likely, I knew what I wanted to do before I started college. I started off Pre Med.
What led to your interest in a health profession?
I was born in a country with a shortage of healthcare providers. Witnessing people in my village lose their lives due to lack of access to healthcare stirred up my interest in the medical field.
Who are what inspired you?
All the minority healthcare professions inspire me daily. Just seeing people who look like me in the medical field is very inspiring.
What obstacles did you overcome in your educational or career journey?
I had to learn English when I moved here 9 years ago. Which hindered my ability to perform better in school but I overcame that obstacle. I also had to overcome imposter syndrome. As a minority, I used to feel like I was not good enough and would constantly compare myself to my peers. However, as time went by, I started focusing on myself and trying to find ways to grow both academically and as a future healthcare provider.
How did SHPEP influence you?
SHPEP helped me navigate the whole process, from undergraduate to graduate school. It also provided mentors whom I am still in contact with today. SHPEP ensured me that a career in medicine is the right path for me.