Current Scholar Spotlight: Deja Rush

Deja Rush leaning against a treeLSAMP Scholar

Rank: Sophomore
Major: Biomedical engineering with a minor in
Spanish and music
Graduation date: 2020

What motivated you to become a part of LSAMP?

I knew I wanted to be a part of a STEM-based minority program at The Ohio State University. Within STEM, there is a lack of cultural competency. So, I believed it was critical for me to be involved in a program with people who can relate to me and my experiences at an institution which is comprised of only about 20% minorities. Also, I believed it was a good way to connect with other minorities who would be taking similar classes.

What opportunities have you had at Ohio State because of LSAMP and ODI that you might not have had otherwise?

Because of LSAMP and ODI, I have been able to fully fund my education and focus on having the ultimate college experience. I have been able to succeed academically because I have had access to resources such as private tutoring and 1:1 success coaching. I have also had the opportunity to improve my portfolio by expanding my network and getting involved in research.

What can you share about your research, and why had you selected that area of study?

I am involved in a cancer research lab in the department of biomedical engineering. I chose this area of research because I am a cancer survivor. My own battle has inspired me and motivated me to make a difference and help find a cure.

What challenges have you experienced as an underrepresented student in STEM? As a woman?

I believe I have had to work harder in order to prove to my peers that I belong and that I am just as capable as they are.          

What are your plans after graduation?

I plan to attend medical school and become a doctor in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation.

What advice would you like to give to future LSAMP scholars?

I would advise them to take advantage of everything that LSAMP has to offer. Stay connected with your mentors, attend conferences and network and be honest about areas you could improve in and then make a change.


Prior Spotlights

Ariane Krumel Spotlight

Ariane Krumel Spotlight

The Ohio State University has a lot to offer its students: 175 majors, 14 colleges, and an estimated 12,000 courses. But beyond the excitement those numbers can generate for incoming undergraduates, transfer students from smaller schools might find Ohio State a little bit intimidating with a campus that covers more than 1,700 acres, has 451 buildings, and boasts nearly 50,000 undergraduate students. Read more.

Michael Mullen II Spotlight

Michael Mullen II Spotlight

Michael Mullen II, a senior majoring in Film Studies, has found guidance and support for both life and classes at The Ohio State University from the Todd A. Bell National Recourse Center on the African American Male (BNRC). “Between Tai Cornute, Todd Suddeth, and Robert Bennett III, I have found a trio of educated mentors who have done much to help me succeed,” he stated. Read more.

Paloma Arroyo Spotlight

Paloma Arroyo Spotlight

Advocating for the importance of diversity is something that Paloma Arroyo has always been passionate about; she has participated in Latino Role Models Day and in the Gates Millennium-HSF Bridge Builders Forum, where she assisted faculty with informing Latino parents and their children about the college. Read more.

Kiara Brown

Kiara Brown

While in the sixth grade, Kiara Brown found out about an opportunity offered by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion’s Young Scholars Program (YSP) when staff from the Cleveland Young Scholars program came to speak at her school, the Cleveland School of the Arts. Read more.

Vincent Johns, Jr.

Vincent Johns, Jr.

Vincent Johns, Jr. has had a love for transportation systems ever since the age of four. “I chose to enter the field of civil engineering to help the aging infrastructure systems and to improve the safety and quality of our roads within our communities and nation,” Vincent stated. The need for infrastructure restoration was especially evident to Vincent in New Orleans. Read more.


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