Jasmine Aboumahboob ’23, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Jasmine Aboumahboob reflects on her time at UConn

Portrait of Jasmine Aboumahboob

(Sydney Herdle/UConn Photo)

How did Jasmine Aboumahboob find the time? Pursing an individualized major focused on health and the social sciences would be enough for most people, but she managed to be active in everything from work at Student Health and Wellness to knitting blankets and clothing for babies in neonatal intensive care units to helping run HuskyTHON, the largest student-run philanthropy effort in the state of Connecticut. She’s got her sights set on eventually pursuing a medical degree, but no matter where she goes next, she’s set an example for Huskies following in her footsteps.

Why did you choose to go to UConn? 

UConn Waterbury is only 15 minutes from my home, and my older brother, a 2020 graduate, attended UConn Waterbury and transferred to Storrs. To stay close to home and save on living costs, I considered this to be the path I would take. However, after his transfer, my brother spoke so highly of his experience in Storrs that I thought I should at least consider going from the start. I learned how much personal development can come from living on campus.

What’s your major/field of study, and what drew you to it? 

The Individualized Major Program allowed me to combine my passions for the human body and health with the social sciences and their application in the medical field. Ultimately, this field of study has proven to be extremely fulfilling in my undergraduate career, and I am lucky to have developed a major that I was passionate about and enjoyed so thoroughly.

Did you have a favorite professor or class? 

So many, including Cell Biology with Professor David Daggett, Principles of Biology II with Professor Susan Herrick, and Global Politics of Childbearing and Reproduction with Professor Carrie Eaton. Two of my most memorable classes were taught by Professor Fumilayo Showers in the Department of Sociology. Professor Showers challenged my peers and I to think critically about the world, specifically health care, in a novel way. Since taking her courses, I have found myself viewing and interacting with health care professionals, peers, and situations in a more informed, critical, and productive way.

What activities were you involved in as a student? 

I began working as a student worker at Student Health and Wellness in my freshman year and have served as the clinical leader for the past two years. I train other students in taking vital signs and running point-of-care medical testing. I was the president of Knit for NICU, an incredible club that knits blankets, stuffed animals, and clothing for babies and families in NICUs across Connecticut. I have also been heavily involved in HuskyTHON, UConn’s largest student-run organization, since freshman year and have served on the management team since my junior year.

I also worked in two research labs, which were both challenging and rewarding. One of my most memorable experiences was volunteering at the Mansfield Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation through Generations Connect, a community outreach organization, for three years.

What’s one thing that surprised you about UConn? 

How small such a large university could feel. With so many interconnected smaller communities through extracurriculars, classes, and social settings, I never felt like UConn was too populous or overwhelming. Through the different resources that I utilized throughout my time at UConn, I was also surprised by the individualized support and help I could receive.

What are your plans after graduation/receiving your degree? 

After graduation, I plan to work as a research and personal care assistant while studying for the MCAT and later applying to medical school. I also hope to spend some quality time with my family before seeing where life takes me in just a few years!

Any advice for incoming students? 

First, go to the involvement fairs, explore UConntact, and talk to others to find different activities, experiences, and opportunities to immerse yourself in. Dabbling in different clubs, teams, or organizations will only help you narrow your interests and find things that you truly love and are passionate about.

Second, you really are never alone. There are endless resources to support you including The Q and W Centers, the Academic Achievement Center, the Dean of Students office, Student Health and Wellness, and so many more. While it may feel intimidating, I can attest to the incredible help that they can provide you with, especially as an incoming student.

Third, slow down and enjoy your time! While college is a space to gain education and knowledge, there is incredible value in meaningful friendships and enjoyable experiences. Enjoy every moment – even the not-so-positive ones.

What’s one thing everyone should do during their time at UConn? 

Get involved with HuskyTHON! Whether in your freshman or senior year, participating in HuskyTHON is an experience that will inspire you, connect you with the community, and allow you to give back to the kids and families at Connecticut Children’s Hospital. There are so many different ways to be involved and even gain leadership.

What will always make you think of UConn? 

Cows, wind, ice cream, huskies, and the subject of chemistry!

How has being a student in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences impacted your UConn experience?  

From my first year, I consistently felt supported by CLAS advisors and administrators. CLAS has exposed me to so many different people in different fields of study. With such a broad range of majors, I was able to find commonalities with those in completely different fields of study — all under the same college.