Eunice Fafiyebi '17, a member of the Texas A&M Foundation Maroon Coats and the Corps of Cadets, is studying to be a global pediatric surgeon.
A conversation with Eunice Fafiyebi ’17, a public health major who aspires to lead by example as a global pediatric surgeon and health policy advocate.
Health care is my passion. At the end of my life, I want to say that I have helped a country, city, community or village shift from poor to quality health care. I am studying to be a global pediatric surgeon, and I dream of advocating for improved federal and international health care policies.
It’s a miracle that I’m at Texas A&M. Growing up, my parents applied each year for the Diversity Visa Lottery, which makes available 50,000 permanent resident visas annually to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the U.S. A computer randomly selects the application numbers, and my family was chosen in 2007. Now, I’m an American citizen.
This is what the Corps of Cadets is about: having no clue who you are, then slowly but surely figuring it out. The Corps shapes you. I always wanted to join the military, but I knew I couldn’t because I was born with sickle cell anemia. When I came to Texas A&M, I thought, ‘This is my chance for a military experience.’ I saw an organization that would make me a better person—one that would discipline me and give me the opportunity to lead.
The American dream is alive. I’ve come from Nigeria to this wonderful school where people encourage me. Now it is up to me to work hard, believe and pray that one day I can inspire others. I didn’t have a dime coming to Texas A&M, and I didn’t even use a computer growing up. Luckily, scholarships and loan options were available. I can go to school now and become the person that I want to be. So, is the American dream alive? Yes, without a doubt. I am so thankful. Several Sul Ross Corps Scholarships and Endowed Opportunity Awards funded by donors through the Texas A&M Foundation have supported my Aggie education. These reduce my loans and enable me to attend Texas A&M and participate in extracurricular organizations.