Tell us about yourself (your full name, where you went to school, what you studied, hobbies, where are you from…etc.)
Well for starters, my name is Michael Girmai and I currently reside in Las Vegas, Nevada. I am 22 years old (s/o all my Virgos out there haha) and I graduated from UNLV this past May with a bachelors in Biological Sciences with a concentration in Cell & Molecular Biology. My hobbies include watching/playing basketball, Game of Thrones, treating women right and of course hanging out with my homies (see attached pic, yes ladies, they’re single too).
How would you describe your college experience?
My college experience was quite the journey. The transition between high school and college was difficult for me simply because I didn’t understand how rigorous majoring in the sciences would be. I had horrible time management skills and at that time, I was so focused on enjoying the full college experience opposed to taking my classes seriously. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t do bad freshman year, I just didn’t live up to the “standard” pre-med student. Once I got my priorities straight, everything became a lot simpler. My time management skills were still poor because I was up every night studying/doing HW until 2 or 3 am despite having an 8:30am class every morning (#TheLifeOfAPreMedStudent). In retrospect, what made my difficult journey a lot easier is when I started not focusing on getting A’s on my classes but rather mastering the concepts that I was being taught. If you fully devote yourself in learning and understanding the material simply because you want to, the A’s will follow! Except Physics. Physics is just terrible.
How did being Eritrean impact your college experience?
Being Eritrean impacted my college experience in a positive way. My parents came to this country in search for a better life in raising my siblings and I like most of you. They always pushed education and they also believed no one can rob us of our knowledge and experiences. I always kept my family and friends in mind whenever I was struggling/stressed out in school. I wanted to become someone my parents would be proud of and more importantly, a role model for the youth.
What’s the biggest piece of advice you have for Eritrean college students?
The biggest piece of advice I have for my fellow college students is to create your own path and fully invest in yourself. Although we all don’t want to disappoint our parents, it’s important to chase your OWN dreams and not there’s. You don’t have to become a doctor, engineer, lawyer or whatever they suggest. Find your passion in life (despite how long it takes) but also keep their advice in mind because they honestly mean well. The second advice I can give yall is to simply have fun. Don’t let school consume you because it’ll do more harm than good. So, go ahead and hit that milly rock on Saturday night and do those last-minute assignments on Sunday evening lol
What are some of your post-college plans?
My post-college plans include continuing my education by getting a master’s degree in either Biochemistry or Physiology and ultimately getting into Medical school. My lifelong goal that I will be accomplishing is becoming an ER Pediatric Physician.
If you could, how would you help ERITREA & the ERITREAN people in your community through your gained knowledge & skills in college
Once I become a Physician, I’ll be able to help my Eritrean people by diagnosing, treating, and educating them regarding their current & future overall health. Hopefully one day I can also open a few clinics back home in Eritrea.
Thank you for this feature! If anyone wants to contact me or simply wants to network, feel free to add me on Facebook (Michael Girmai). You can also add me on snapchat (M-Songz) since I don’t have any other social media accounts haha. Good luck to everyone out there!