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About Us

Current Scholars

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Class of 2023 Scholars

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Ibeth

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Ibeth Caceres

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Undergraduate institution: Sam Houston State University

My name is Ibeth Caceres I attended Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas where I obtained my Bachelor of Science degree in biology with a minor in chemistry. My ultimate career goal is to return to my hometown of Trinity, Texas, or to a rural, underserved community resembling my own to practice medicine. Additionally, I hope to become a leader in eliminating health disparities and diversifying the field of medicine within my community. Outside of studying I like to hang out with my friends, go to the movie theatre, and practice my photography skills.

Tara

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Tara Everett

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Undergraduate institution: The University of Texas at Austin

My name is Tara Everett, and I graduated with Highest Honors from The University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Science and Arts degree in Biology. While at UT, I was very involved in tutoring, mentoring, and volunteering, and I participated in multiple medical mission trips. While at Baylor, I am interested in doing more mission work as well as researching ways to improve health outcomes for underserved populations through education and outreach. Outside of medicine, I like exploring new restaurants and playing softball and racquetball.

Olivia

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Olivia Hindera

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Undergraduate institution: California Institute of Technology

My name is Olivia Hindera. Born and raised in Texas, I spent a few years in California, earning my Bachelor of Science in Biology from California Institute of Technology. Before coming to Baylor, I traveled to the United Kingdom to complete a degree in Clinical and Public Health Nutrition from University College London. My current health interests are psychiatry, health policy, and public health measures that aim to improve mental health and nutrition, especially in Native American communities. Outside of school I enjoy reading, running, hiking, cooking, and spending time with my dog Gary.

Matthew

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Matthew Morones

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Undergraduate institution: The University of Texas at Austin

My name is Matthew Morones. I have lived in Texas my entire life and plan to practice medicine in this great state. I graduated with Honors from The University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Science and Arts degree in Biochemistry. I received a certificate in Business from the McCombs School of Business. I worked as an Undergraduate Assistant, leading the tutorial services at UT. I was also involved in financial research. I plan on obtaining my MBA from Rice university while in medical school. My interests are sports medicine, healthcare infrastructure, and pediatric health inequalities. In my free time I enjoy working out, golfing, and cooking.

Rachelle

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Rachelle Wanser

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Undergraduate institution: Johns Hopkins University

My name is Rachelle Wanser and I am from Fort Worth, Texas. I attended a high school specializing in biomedical sciences before matriculating to Johns Hopkins University where I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Molecular and Cellular Biology. I am interested in pediatrics and am passionate about providing education and mentorship to others. I aspire to work primarily in underserved and low resource settings, helping to decrease health disparities. In my free time, I enjoy working with children, spending time with friends and family, reading and dancing.

Kobby

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Kobby Wiafe

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Undergraduate institution: Baylor University

My name is Kobby Wiafe, and I was born in Ghana in West Africa. My family and I moved to Bethany, Oklahoma when I was 11 months old and that is where I grew up until I went to college. I attended Baylor University where I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry. Though somewhat unrelated, my medical interests include global health, rural medicine, medical humanities, and sports medicine; I am very thankful for former professors, past research projects, and for my own personal experiences that have allowed me to be exposed to these many aspects of the medical field. As a current African-American medical student, I hope to be a mentor of sorts to younger minority students who are also striving to become future healthcare professionals. When I'm not studying, I enjoy traveling with friends and family (I'm currently at 15 countries and counting), finding the best ice cream spots, keeping up with my favorite sports teams (Oklahoma City Thunder, Baylor Bears, Oklahoma Sooners), and picking up my violin every so often to see if I still remember how to play it.

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Class of 2022 Scholars

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COE

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Mariana Carretero-Murillo

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Undergraduate institution: Houston Baptist University

My name is Mariana Carretero Murillo, and I am originally from Mexico. When I was thirteen-years-old, my family and I moved to Houston, Texas. Moving to the U.S. was tough for all of us, especially for my parents who were working various jobs. However, they did not care how much they worked, as long my siblings and I were getting the education they thought we deserved and in the country they believed would give us a better future. Because of this, I was fortunate enough to obtain a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Houston Baptist University, and graduate from their liberal arts Honors College program. After graduating, I worked as a research associate at a neurology laboratory that focused on neurodegenerative diseases at the University of Texas Medical Branch. I am currently pursuing my dream as a medical student at Baylor College of Medicine. My medical interests include immigrant health as well as global health. As a future physician I plan to reach underserved communities and take part of medical mission trips around the world.

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Lorin Crear

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Undergraduate Institution: University of Georgia

My name is Lorin Crear. An Atlanta native, I graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Science in Biology and dual minors in Spanish and Global Health before matriculating at Baylor College of Medicine in the fall of 2018. I am interested in women’s health, racial health disparities, and global health. My past research experience involved a study on socioeconomic factors affecting mothers’ adherence to AAP Safe to Sleep guidelines, and I’ve also participated in community outreach efforts pertaining to safe newborn sleep and child nutrition. In my free time, I enjoy cooking, exploring Houston, and salsa dancing.

COE

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Chelsea Livingston

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Undergraduate institution: Rice University

My name is Chelsea Livingston, and I was born and raised in Houston, TX. I attended Rice University where I was a Rice/Baylor Medical Scholar and graduated cum laude with a B.A. in Kinesiology/Sports Medicine. I chose to pursue a career in medicine because of my passion for learning human anatomy and physiology. I want to use this knowledge to make positive and meaningful differences in the lives of people when they need help the most and offer compassionate, respectful, and culturally sensitive care to the diverse population of patients here in Houston and in other underserved settings. I currently volunteer with the BCM Saturday Morning Science program, which I attended while in high school, to motivate ethnic minority students to pursue careers in the biosciences. Outside of school, I enjoy reading, watching movies, listening to music, traveling, and eating international cuisines.

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Natasha Navejar

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Undergraduate Institution: Tulane University

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Maria Vigil

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Undergraduate Institution: University of Notre Dame

My name is Maria Vigil, and I am originally from Albuquerque, N.M. I completed my undergraduate education at the University of Notre Dame, where I studied piano performance with a supplemental major in pre-health sciences. My current health interests are wide and varied, but include cardiology, surgery, and women's health, with special interest in refugee health and nutrition. Outside of studying, I enjoy hiking, running, singing, playing piano, cooking, and reading.

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Class of 2021 Scholars

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Olivia Aguilar

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Undergraduate Institution: Rice University

My name is Olivia Aguilar and I am a South-Texan native who attended a high school specializing in engineering and science before attending Rice University in Houston, Texas. There, I studied classics and cognitive science while leading medical service trips to Central America. Upon matriculating, I began my first year of medical school at Baylor in fall 2017. When not studying, I like flamenco dancing and visiting family around Texas. My medical interests include issues in health equity among low-income surgical patients and bettering health outcomes through multidisciplinary approaches.

COE

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Lucia Guerrero

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Undergraduate Institution: The University of Texas at Austin

My name is Lucia Guerrero, I am from El Paso, Texas. I attended the The University of Texas in Austin where I obtained a bachelor of science and arts in biology with a minor in government. I currently attend Baylor College of Medicine where I am pursuing an M.D./MPH. My interests include: health policy, health disparities, global health and women’s health.

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Maria Jaramillo

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Undergraduate Institution: Trinity University

My name is Maria Alejandra Jaramillo and I came to Baylor College of Medicine after graduating from Trinity University with a major in Neuroscience and a minor in Chemistry. At Trinity, I was highly active in research, residential life, and admissions. Here at Baylor, I joined the Admissions Ambassadors and I look forward to finding a research project that is clinically oriented. I am also very excited to explore more opportunities to serve underserved populations and further a mission of quality healthcare for all. In my free time, I love reading, watching Netflix, and exploring new restaurants around Houston.

COE

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Mei-Li Laracuente

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Undergraduate Institution: University of Arizona

My name is Mei-Li. In 2014, I graduated with a chemistry degree from the University of Arizona and began working shortly thereafter as an analytical chemist. In August 2017, I joined Baylor's M.D./Ph.D. program. My medical interests lie in improving healthcare for underserved populations and my research interests are in diagnostics and drug delivery.

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Christina Maxey

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Undergraduate Institution: The University of Texas at Austin

My name is Christina Maxey, and I graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 2017 with a degree in Biochemistry. When I was in undergrad I studied abroad in South Korea and found that I really love traveling to different countries. I have since been to China, Panama, and Costa Rica, and I am planning on hitting up Japan (and Korea again) next! Outside of traveling, I'm particularly interested in Women's Health, especially as it pertains to Black and African American women, and hope to focus my present and future on helping to diminish unfavorable disparities.

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Vicki Mercado

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Undergraduate Institution: Whittier College

My name is Vicki Mercado and I am an MS1 M.D./Ph.D. student. Originally from Brooklyn NY, I went to Whittier College in Los Angeles to study Biology, and then completed a Post-baccalaureate Research Education Program at the University of Pennsylvania prior to beginning at Baylor. Having done basic science and translational research, I am interested in learning how to incorporate my passion for improving healthcare access, equity, and patient education into my future research and medical training.

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Acara Turner

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Undergraduate Institution: University of Houston

My name is Acara Turner and I grew up in Houston, and graduated from DeBakey High School for Health Professions. I then matriculated at the University of Houston from where I graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in mathematics and two minors in business administration and medicine and society. My past research experiences involve the integration of math and medicine. These include using mathematical models to visualize blood flow through vessels with stents in patients with atherosclerosis and writing codes that predict brain tumor growth in mice for application in patients with Stage IV Glioblastoma Multiforme. Now that I am at Baylor, I hope to become involved with more exciting research and challenge myself in new ways.

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Class of 2020 Scholars

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Chioma Ikedionwu

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Undergraduate Institution: Baylor University

My name is Chioma Ikedionwu and I am a second year medical student at Baylor College of Medicine. I was born and raised in Oklahoma, but got to Texas as fast as I could by attending Baylor University in Waco for my undergraduate education. I love traveling and have crossed over a dozen different countries off my bucket list so far. When I’m not studying or working in Houston though, you can find me at various food festivals, art shows, or a Rocket game every once in a while. As for my medical career, I am interested in surgery and OB/Gyn. Additionally, I have a great interest in promoting health literacy and basic medical education among youth and adolescents. I believe that having a good foundation of scientific and healthcare knowledge is invaluable for advocating for one’s self and taking ownership of our healthcare. I hope to engage with my colleagues and community in order to spread this passion and empower others to make the most of their health and the systems in place to maintain it.

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Sean M. Rodriguez

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Undergraduate Institution: Amherst College

My name is Sean Rodriguez and I moved to Massachusetts from Corpus Christi, Texas, in 2011 to attend Amherst College. There, I majored in environmental studies and played four years on the varsity Men's Tennis Team. I proceeded to take a gap year after college, dedicating a year of service to a fourth-grade classroom for City Year in San Antonio, an Americorps program centered on helping disadvantaged youth. But medicine has always been my goal, and after a fulfilling year of service, I officially embarked on my medical journey, matriculating to Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. Now in my second year, I am enamored with surgery. As my journey continues, I look forward to continuing to learn not only the science of medicine but the humanity of it. When I am not studying for classes, I enjoy organizing club events and programs for a humanities club on campus, working with disadvantaged youth, and playing the occasional game of tennis.

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Class of 2019 Scholars

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COE

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Caila Boyd

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Undergraduate Institution: University of South Carolina

My name is Caila Boyd and I attended the University of South Carolina where I graduated Magnum Cum Laude and received a B.S in biomedical engineering. I am the vice president and community service coordinator for Med-Peds interest group, where I volunteer with Plant It Forward, a refugee program, and Pal’s Place, a respite program for young adults with disabilities. I also participated in Saturday Morning Science, a pipeline program for minority students, and Kidney Koach, a mentoring program for children on dialysis. I wish to pursue a career in primary care as a med-peds physician serving underserved communities, coordinating care for complex patients, addressing their barriers and creating a partnership to motivate and aid them in overcoming these barriers.

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Ethan Edmondson, MPH

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Undergraduate Institution: Amherst College

Ethan Edmondson was born and raised in Houston, TX. He received a Bachelor's Degree with honors in Anthropology and Spanish from Amherst College. As an undergraduate he was heavily involved in a student-run global health non-profit organization, which led him to post-graduate study in public health research methods at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. After graduating with a public health master's degree, Ethan returned home to Houston where he attends Baylor College of Medicine. After medical school, Ethan hopes to pursue residency in Pediatric Neurology. Outside of medical school, Ethan enjoys traveling with his lovely girlfriend, Holly, hiking, cycling, following the Houston Rockets, and playing with his German Shepherd, Stubbs.

COE

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Chelsea Henshaw

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Undergraduate Institution: Rice University

My name is Chelsea Henshaw and I graduated from Rice University with a B.A in Kinesiology and minor in biochemistry and cell biology. I am interested in obstetrics and gynecology and I have an interest in doing research on healthcare disparities related to maternal morbidity and mortality. I am also passionate about enriching and diversifying medicine by providing mentorship to minority pre-medical students. In my free time, I enjoy cooking, spending time with friends and family, and listening to music.

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Christabel Jaiyeola

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Undergraduate Institution: Oral Roberts University

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Undergraduate Institution: University of Texas at El Paso

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Chinma E. Onyewuenyi

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Undergraduate Institution: Texas A&M University

My name is Chinma Onyewuenyi. Growing up between Houston, Texas and Lagos, Nigeria, I developed an interest in health equity and work in underserved communities at a very young age. I obtained my B.S. in biomedical sciences with a concurrent BIMS International Certificate in Cultural Competency and Communication in Spanish from Texas A&M University. I then began pursuing my medical degree at Baylor College of Medicine in August of 2015. My primary areas of involvement have centered around Baylor’s SNMA chapter, the student Global Health Pathway, and the Med-Peds Interest Group. Ultimately, I aspire to be a combined internal medicine and pediatrics physician working primarily in underserved and low resource settings.