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Dahlia Hurtado

Hi there! My name is Dahlia Hurtado and I am a senior at the University of Central Florida. I am majoring in Chemistry with a focus in biochemistry. I was born and raised in Orlando and graduated from Dr. Phillips High School in 2013. This is where my interest in chemistry was first sparked. Some of my favorite courses at UCF are labs. I love to be hands-on with science, applying what I’ve learned in lectures to actual experiments. Not only is it cool to wear a lab coat and goggles, but what’s cooler is getting to synthesize everyday things like soap and aspirin. One of my favorite professors at UCF is Dr. Flory. He is passionate in teaching physiology and has shown me how interesting and important it is to understand the chemistry that happens every day in our own bodies. I have always loved to volunteer in the community, and I’m so excited to be able to combine my passion for volunteering and science! By being in the STEM ambassador program, I hope to be able to give back to my community in several ways. I hope to be able to give back by encouraging students to pursue STEM majors by sharing my stories and personal experiences with them. I hope to serve not only as a role model, but also as a mentor for any students with questions on how to go about studying something in STEM. I also hope to share the new avenues of STEM, such as nanoscience, to younger students through teach-ins or science clubs. If I could give any words of wisdom to STEM students at UCF, I would advise them not to be afraid of the challenges you will need to overcome as a STEM major. I did not start out as a STEM major, but I soon realized that despite the rumors of intimidating classes, this was the right choice for me. In my free time, I enjoy hanging out with friends, baking, spending afternoons at Walt Disney World, and traveling. I am currently trying to visit all 50 states in the U.S. and hope to see the world one day.