Fitchburg, Wis. native Shah-Jahan Dodwad ’14 has some good advice for college students, especially incoming freshmen. “Think long-term,” he says. “Your education is a building block for your future."
He's been following his own advice. Shah graduated cum laude, with a BS in Biology, and a minor in Chemistry. In April, he received the Dominican Scholars award, for his outstanding work both in and out of the classroom. While a student he volunteered at the UW Hospital, Meals on Wheels and Savory Sundays, which is a group that serves meals to Madison’s homeless community.
Shah actually attended Ohio State University for his freshman year, then transferred here. He says the College is a better fit for his long-term plan. “Especially coming from a big school like Ohio State where I can hide behind other students, where I can hide behind my i.d. number, here you’re in the classroom, the professor knows your face, you can’t hide. If you don’t know something, you don’t know something. I feel that forces the students to actually learn the material, to understand the fundamentals of the material.”
His father and several family members are doctors. Shah has had his sights set on medical school from a very young age. This fall he’ll attend Wayne State University to pursue a Master of Science in Medical Sciences, to further prepare for med school.
In the meantime, he’ll continue the work on the “building blocks” of his future. And a last piece of advice for new freshmen this fall, from an unlikely source.
“Actually, this is from a ‘Bollywood’ movie, it’s a line that always struck me. It says, ‘if you try to achieve success, it will always get away from you. But if you achieve excellence, success will come to you.’ I would encourage students to try to be the best that they can be, and to think long-term.”
(Above: Shah with Professors Brenda del Moral (l.) and Nicole Kime, Department of Biological Sciences, at the 2014 Dominican Honors Convocation.)