I first heard about the Universities at Shady Grove (USG), when I was in the Achieving Collegiate Excellence and Success (ACES) program in high school. Back then, USG was described to me as a college campus in Montgomery County where I could attend one of nine Maryland state universities, enroll in their program, and receive my degree from that university, just as if I had attended the main campus.

After attending Montgomery College (MC), I realized that I wanted to complete my bachelor’s degree through Salisbury University at USG, so I enrolled in the Exercise Science program offered on the campus. The pathway and transfer process was straightforward, and provided me with an opportunity to stay close to home while studying a field I was extremely passionate about — sports medicine. The financial benefits of attending MC and staying local to complete my degree was the best decision I could have made for my education. I also really appreciated the smaller class sizes that have allowed me not only to connect and converse with my professors, but also make friends within my program.

My time as an ACES scholar has afforded me a number of opportunities at USG, including numerous academic and professional resources to continue developing myself as a student and a professional. In the future, I hope to participate more in the various student-run clubs and organizations once we can safely return to campus again.

I look forward to applying the skills I’ve learned in my program to improve and promote good health to others. I’m still deciding on my ultimate career path, but I have a strong interest in clinical exercise physiology and athletic training. I want to make a positive impact on people’s lives and be a motivating force, especially during this difficult time in which the pandemic has affected many people’s health and overall well-being.