A junior inductee to Phi Beta Kappa, Ravi graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Public Health and received the Chancellor’s Award of Distinction, Honors in Public Health, Special Recognition in Public Health, along with distinction in the Biological Sciences for Research Excellence, and membership in the Delta Omega public health honor society.
In January 2021, Ravi became the first UCI undergraduate Semi-Finalist for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program English Teaching Assistantship to Moldova. He is currently awaiting results from the Moldova review panel, which will choose recipients by the end of Spring Quarter 2021.
As an undergraduate at UCI, Ravi Sandhu was actively involved in interdisciplinary research. During his senior year, he was selected to participate in the Public Health Honors Research Colloquium. Under the mentorship of Dr. Annie Ro and Dr. Miryha Runnerstrom, Ravi designed a qualitative study to investigate the social determinants responsible for heightening e-cigarette use amongst second-generation Hispanic-Americans. Ravi first-authored a manuscript detailing his findings and submitted his work for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.
Additionally, during his senior year, Ravi was selected to research in the Air Pollution Health Effects Laboratory. Under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Kleinman and Dr. David Herman, Ravi designed a quantitative study to investigate the cardiovascular effects of waterpipe smoking, which resulted in a first-authored manuscript of his research findings published by the School of Biological Sciences in the Journal of Undergraduate Research. Ravi also presented his work at multiple national scientific research conferences, including the 59th Annual Meeting of the Society of Toxicology, the 113th Conference of the Air and Waste Management Association, and the 2020 Sigma Xi National Annual Meeting.
Since graduating, Ravi has continued his successful involvement in the Anteater community. He is currently a member of the Public Health Student Alumni Chapter, and due to his peers recognizing his value to the campus, in the Fall of 2020, Ravi was selected to serve on the Young Alumni Council. Through his involvement, Ravi hopes to design mentorship initiatives that encourage undergraduate Anteaters to participate in scholarship advising and offer support to those considering non-traditional career paths.
1) If we ask one of your friends to describe you, what would they say?
My close friends would characterize me as very eager to learn and very eager to make a positive change in the world around me. They would say that I enjoy learning about different communities and understanding their unique histories and struggles. They would say that I am dedicated to using my education and experiences as tools to resolving the disparities confronting every community in need.
2) What life events or personal mentorships, if any, directed you to the field of study you have chosen for your future endeavors?
As a freshman, I was drawn to the Program in Public Health by its faculty, interdisciplinary coursework, and research opportunities. I felt that the Program in Public Health would best prepare me to serve as a family practitioner in underserved communities. However, during my senior year, I was very fortunate to participate in the Public Health Honors Research Colloqium, Public Health Practicum Experience, UROP Student Editorial Board, SOP Big 10 Scholarship Advising and Chancellor’s Honors Seminar. Through these experiences, I was able to realize that my true passion rested in healthcare law and designing policies that improve health outcomes amongst marginalized communities. I plan to pursue a J.D. and ultimately work in public service. My journey would have been impossible without the support of countless mentors such as Dr. Miryha Runnerstrom, Dr. Annie Ro, Dr. Michael Kleinman, Dr. Ted Gideonse, Director Said Shokair, Dr. Samuel Schriner, Courtney Santos, Rocio Torres and Chancellor Howard Gillman.
3) How and why did you choose the Fulbright Scholarship opportunity and what was your experience like working under the tutelage of your SOP advisor?
I chose the Fulbright Scholarship opportunity because it offered me a unique opportunity to simultaneously engage in service and cross-cultural exchange. By serving as an English Teaching Assistant, I would have the privilege to teach English to students with very limited exposure to American culture. Similarly, the students, faculty and community members in my host country would have the opportunity to share their culture, history, language, and experience with me. I am very appreciative of Courtney Santos at SOP, and I feel greatly indebted to her. She is one of few, rare individuals who can take their own immense understanding of very nuanced, abstract ideas and communicate it in a very learnable manner. I credit her and the entirety of the SOP team for elevating my ability to contextualize my experiences and communicate my passion to others.
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