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My Undergraduate Journey: You Can Finish (UCF)

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

The days are slowly arriving as my undergraduate experience comes to an end. I’m almost at the finish line of my time at the University of Central Florida and I’m beyond grateful for my educational journey. From lessons to blessings, my four years at the University of Central Florida have been an important stepping stone in cultivating my future career and expectations.

Coming from a small city in southwest Florida, I knew I wanted to embark on a new adventure in Orlando when I was heading into undergrad. While stepping onto the UCF campus during my first semester, I felt at home due to the multicultural student population and numerous clubs and organizations. Although the campus had over 70,000 students, I found hobbies, lifelong friends, and an educational path that best suited me. Dipping my feet in different ponds of activities, I became more adaptable and accepting of my strong suits.

Throughout my time at UCF, however, I also had to overcome numerous challenges. There were days when I questioned my ability to finish my degree and my ability to lead. Most importantly, I questioned my ability to apply to medical school to become a doctor. However, I didn’t let my shortcomings define me. UCF taught me that rejection is only redirection and that what is meant for me will come eventually. I learned to never give up, even if others doubt me.

In my four years, I learned that people come and go. I learned that I’ll win numerous times, but there will also be times when I’ll come up short. All I can do is keep my head high. Better days are ahead!

Photo by Sir Manuel on Unsplash

In short, four years go by fast when you’re having fun! As Dec. 16 is around the corner, my days as a college student may close, but I’ll always be a student of life.

Similar to my undergraduate experience, life isn’t linear, and I’m glad I was able to learn that firsthand while attending UCF. I started UCF as a biomedical science major to complete a dual degree in sociology and interdisciplinary studies. I started my undergraduate journey just wanting to be a doctor and become a physician-scientist who intends to specialize in pediatrics and academic medicine to emphasize the importance of minority health. With the aid of UCF, I could intertwine all my passions to create a lifelong story.

From switching my major to building the confidence to be involved in student government and the Multicultural Student Center, I will leave UCF as a stronger individual and leader.

From being involved in Writer’s Uknighted, Her Campus, and Strike Magazine, I was able to find my voice.
Most importantly, through being involved in undergraduate research, I was able to receive closure on my diabetes diagnosis and further advocate for those who have diabetes.

UCF taught me the importance of persevering and excelling toward my unique yet cultivating future. Although my degree will say that I’m graduating with a Bachelor of Science, I’m ultimately graduating with wisdom, clarity, and resilience, key attributes I’ll use in my future endeavors. I can and will finish when it comes to achieving my goals and dreams.

As I close a chapter, I’ll open a new one. My time at UCF may have been fleeting, but it won’t be forgotten.
Instead, I’ll be forever thankful to UCF for giving me the friends, family, and instruments to guide me to become stronger.

Thank you, UCF, for shaping me into the young woman I am today.

Born and raised in Southwest Florida, Eliana is a senior at the University of Central Florida pursuing a dual degree in Sociology, Interdisciplinary Studies, and a minor in Human Services on a Pre-Medical track. Once graduation, Eliana plans to apply to medical school to pursue an MD/MPH degree to become a Pediatric Endocrinologist. Eliana's hobbies include shopping, working out, and anything writing-related. Lastly, Eliana loves going on foodie adventures and trying new foods! Follow her instagram:eatswitheliana to stay tuned!