A Different Story

The Story

Here is a little about me: I am a senior at Texas A&M University in the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVM). I serve as a CVM Ambassador, a Regents’ Scholar, public relations officer for Ags of OAK (Open Acts of Kindness), the chair of TAMU’s Alternative Spring Break committee, and a first-generation college student.

As an end goal for my undergraduate years, I will run a marathon just four days before graduation! In addition to all of this, I am also a writer, a podcast lover, and huge fan of non-profit organizations. I strive to be a professional, I strive to work within non-profits, and I strive to write a book one day on my story.

Another Take

Chau and her momWhen I started my freshman year at Texas A&M, my mom began her own college experience in my hometown of Texarkana.

I am the youngest in my family, and to see my mother begin her ultimate goal is just one reason why she is my role model. When exam weeks approach, I get stressed, but my mom has always been my backbone for strength. English is not her first language, so the transition from small exchanges with friends to a classroom setting was drastic.

We both have our ups and downs throughout our journeys, but those are our constant reminders of the goals that drive us. My mom is an aspiring nurse. I am an aspiring therapist. These two pathways are semi-similar, and we have similar courses!

During my four years here, I have had nights that I FaceTimed with my mom to see how her classes are going. “Chau! I received a 90 on my anatomy quiz!”—I always smile ear-to-ear when I hear remarks like this.

These small moments and exchanges with my mother are the highlights of my days. These moments are simple, but my mom’s dedication to her work is truly inspiring to me.

During my time at TAMU, this story was not told, but this story is my constant motivation. I am optimistic because of my mom, and I strive for the same excellence she aims for in her studies. In two weeks, I get to graduate and I owe it to my inspiring mom, a great student.

Letting Life Lead

I had a lot of big moments in 2017, most of which were not planned. Looking back, I see that many of my favorite moments were decisions I made on a whim—to travel, to grow, to take opportunities. Last year was the year of receiving the beauty that is the Aggie ring, seeing my beautiful 91-year-old grandma in Vietnam, helping rebuild a home in Oklahoma for the sweetest family, and falling in love with California when visiting universities for graduate programs. These were the beginning of my senior-year memories that will make me cherish my undergraduate days for years to come.

Chau in California
Chau visited California to learn more about the area’s Doctor of Physical Therapy programs.

On the first day of class this semester, one of my professors introduced himself by first relating to undergraduates. His motive as an undergraduate was to just “get out” and become a veterinarian. But then he added a twist. Along the way and with the mentality to just “getting out,” he found another passion—a passion for teaching, a pathway that made him come back to academia after practicing as a veterinarian, graduating with a second doctorate, and continuing the process that he wanted to get out of. His moral importance for the class was to say follow where life takes you.I came into 2018 with nothing but positivity because I have been waiting for this year since 2014, my freshman year.

And at that moment, I related. I reminisced about my path in college to now and how I stumbled into my passion for physical therapy and to my growth as a student. I can say that this ongoing, four-year journey has changed me. but it is the change that has given me my dedication to strive and be here.

I like to live my life by Einstein’s words of being “passionately curious,” my constant need to question and search for answers through the people around me. So what will I be curious about this semester? A capstone style BIMS writing course, immunology, microbiology, and a neuroscience class. Yes, after three-and-a-half years of hard work, I am excited to announce my interest is in my set of classes this semester! I am on my second week and I am a whirlwind of emotions. I find myself loving my classes every day, even when the workload is massive. I see myself aspiring to be like my professors and express such passion for the sciences. I see my future just beginning as I get through these four months.

2018, the long awaited year, is now, and I cannot express how fortunate I feel for the people I have met and the relationships I have had. This semester I get to balance my classes, student activities, shadowing, GRE prepping, graduate school applications, and, most importantly, studying. And I am really excited!

Right now, I am letting life lead me.

Let’s Talk Family

Howdy! My name is Chau, and I am a biomedical sciences major
with high hopes of pursuing a Doctorate of Physical Therapy as the
next step in my education. This is my second year as an ambassador,
and I am excited to get to share my love for this college from the
perspective of an undergraduate.


Chau and her family

If I were given an opportunity to stand up and speak in front of
a crowd, I would speak on behalf of my parents. I would speak about
their dreams for our family and their humbling personalities that
have made me the person I am today. I am an Aggie, but one with a
unique start. When asking high school senior Chau for her reasoning
to attend Texas A&M University, she would say, “Because TAMU
has friendly campus.” This is true, but it has turned into so much
more. The Aggie Core Values are what I embody and love to share.
The pride I hold when someone asks me where I attend school is
quite extreme. It is that power and the lessons of the
12th Man that rubbed off on me and made me convert my
entire family to Aggies as well. As my senior year goes, I have
found that I reflect and have had that bittersweet mindset
throughout the year.

I had the opportunity to go to Vietnam this summer and visit
both my parents’ hometowns. My dad was a city boy, and mom was a
country girl. It had been more than 10 years since I visited
Vietnam, and I was stoked to end my anatomy and physiology-filled
summer with a trip visiting family. I got to hug my 91-year-old
grandma, the strongest women I know; drink Vietnamese coffee with
my favorite uncle almost every morning; cook vegan meals with my
aunts; and drive on scooters with my cousins. It was these little
things that were most important to me to celebrate and

Even more so, I got to experience my culture and my unfading
love for a grand amount of people I have only known through Skype
conversations for the majority of my life. We all share multiple
things in common, including our selfless personalities and the
honor and respect we have toward each other and the world around
us. Coming back from this trip enlightened me. I built bonds and
created connections even though we are once again on the opposite
sides of this earth. My family members are my backbone, and they
make me smile even on the most stressful days as a college student.
I like to compare my family as true Aggies because their character
and positivity is my inspiration and motivation in many of my
rigorous classes.

School is tough, but my time here has definitely been worth
every moment. Being an Aggie makes me feel like being part of a
bigger family. Throughout my three years (going on fourth, WHOOP!)
here at Texas A&M University, I don’t like to say that I have
changed, but I have. I took a huge leap attending a school that
separates me by six hours from my parents, a school with which my
family had no association. My biomedical sciences major has
broadened my horizons and let me meet people who share the same
passion for healthcare, and I have found that it is the little
moments, like bus rides to West Campus and random hallway talks
waiting for the classes to start, that remind me of the memories I
made with my family in Vietnam. The strength of my family and the
Aggie spirit is strong within me.

Looking Back and Pushing Forward

It amazes me how two years can go by. It also amazes me that two years is all that is left of my undergraduate career. These past years at Texas A&M University have helped me achieve my goal of preparing for professional school though studying and rigorous science courses.

Rewind to freshman year, the fall of 2014. I started as a biomedical science major, and today I am proud to say that I have stuck with it and have added of an anthropology minor. I definitely found myself in college and have been working on figuring out life.

I am a first-generation student and am attending Texas A&M. I am a very positive person and even if my stress level is at its max. I choose to laugh and bring light to my life by keeping positive. I believe every person contributes to the people they meet in life. Knowing that I can change the world motivates me. I am a type of person who is happy to get to know strangers. I push myself because I know what I do now is shaping my career and me as a person. My parents came here to America to give me a better life, and I hold that near to my heart everyday. I keep positive and grow everyday, just wondering about what will be. I have a dream that can only be achieved if I work for it.

I am a young activist. As a junior at TAMU, I am working for my future. My plans are to become a physical therapist, and my ultimate goal is joining the Peace Corps upon retirement. I want a life full of impacting lives, and this motivates me everyday. I am 20, with a life plan that pushes me to work hard. My ability to focus, big dreams of helping others, and my personality lead me to help give back to my community.