Meet the Scholars

Five Minutes with Esmeralda

College: University of Texas at Austin
Major: Health Care
Year: 2012 Dell Scholar

What led you to pursuing your degree in health care?
I’ve always wanted to pursue a career in the healthcare industry. Growing up my family and I were not able to afford health insurance and observationally, it was fascinating to me how quality and cost of care played great barriers in seeking medical aid within our nation. I wanted to help bring awareness and bridge this gap.

I was also fascinated by how beautiful the concept of health is, how our human bodies operate, and how health promotes overall well-being in our different, unique and ever-changing lifestyles.

You now have your Master’s Degree, what is that in?
After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin in 2016, I continued to earn my Master of Business Administration degree and am looking to begin my Project Management Professional Certification this year to help direct healthcare projects to successful results.

What is your current occupation?
I currently work in a merge of the healthcare, education and business industries. The Dell Scholars program’s guidance has helped me develop techniques to find a balance between my passions, career goals, and aspirations to give back to my community, my family, and myself.

I currently work within administration in a federally qualified health center, where we assist, serve and strengthen our communities by helping implement and deliver health equity and care to each patient. As a Clinical Services Support Analyst, I have an array of responsibilities under the departments of Education and Research, and Clinical Services. I supervise several educational programs, develop and manage process improvement initiatives and assist an array of 500+ healthcare professionals and learners in pursuit of their graduate medical degrees, to fulfill enriching education experiences within our 25 clinics; helping to foster their education, goals and the health care of tomorrow. Additionally, as an Analyst, I assist with performance and productivity analysis, by analyzing trends and developing solutions, and access projects to ensure patients receive quality care at the right place and the right time.

How did your experience as a Dell Scholar help post-college?
The Dell Scholars program has helped me embark on new educational and career steps confidently. Our Dell Scholars family provided me with the support to ask questions, and confidence to seek mentors and step forth to make progress on career milestones. I actively planned my next steps, setting SMART goals, meeting new people (both in my anticipated field and those pursuing a different degree), maintaining an organized planner, and taking steps (small or large) towards achieving them.

Their support expanded beyond the scholarship funding; they offered several resources that as a student, helped me navigate my college transition period and graduation so well. The program was always present. When home felt hundreds of miles away during my time as an undergraduate student, the scholarship program and my scholar peers provided an extra motivational factor to keep going. They believed in every ounce of me. We were in it together!