Meet the 2021 Scholars

Get to know the hopes, dreams, and talents of this year's winners.

Mariam A.

Undergraduate Recipient

"Living through a global pandemic with a chronic illness, what is one piece of inspirational advice that you would give to other students with CF who are in the same or similar position?"

Living through a global pandemic with a chronic illness, one piece of advice that I would give to other students with Cystic Fibrosis who are in a similar position as me would be to find a support system. CF patients have always been doing things to protect themselves such as social distancing, washing hands and even in some cases having to wear masks, however when the COVID-19 pandemic began these precautions have only been intensified. The constant worry and anxiousness was affecting my mental health and I realized it should be just as much a priority as my physical health. We rarely treat our mental health the same as our physical health even though our mental health gives us perspective and context. In order for me to prioritize my mental health during this pandemic, it was critical to strengthen my support system. The saying that it takes an entire village to raise a child resonates with me. I would encourage those to take the time in this quarantine to really identify who are those individuals in your “village.” For me, although I was restricted in traveling and gathering with people, it allowed me to connect with family and friends on a deeper and continuous level by connecting with them virtually and treasuring our physical meetings. This experience allowed me to shift my perspective by seeing my mental health as a vital organ that needs caring just as much as my lungs do physically.

Mariam A.'s Artwork

Mariam A.'s Achievements

  • Mentor for Best Buddies, 2017-2018
  • Sound and Lighting Manager in Theatre Productions, 2017-2018
  • High School Honor Roll, 2017-2018
  • National Honor Society, 2018-2020
  • Children’s Summer Camp Counselor, 2017-2020
  • Marketing Intern for Dental Office, 2020-Present
  • Part-time Worker at Family Restaurant, 2019-Present
  • University of Mary Washington Dean's list, Spring 2020, Fall 2020