Eboni Arnold credits her undergraduate success to self-advocacy, mentorship, and early exposure to her career path. She now looks forward to the new challenges of the doctoral program she has chosen to pursue and hopes to one day be a role model.
Growing up in Titusville, Florida, just a few miles from the Kennedy Space Center, Eboni Arnold was naturally drawn and astute in science and math. Everyone around her thought she should become a doctor, but she never imagined it for herself.
During his freshman year of high school, Arnold’s impressive academic performance caught the attention of his anatomy and physiology teacher, who advised him to attend a six-week summer residency research program in a local university.
After learning all about laboratory research, attending scientific conferences and being mentored by professional researchers, Arnold said that was when she knew the perfect career path for her – a scientist.
Arnold is now looking forward to attending Harvard University in the fall, where she has been accepted for a doctorate. program in biological and biomedical sciences. The recent graduate graduated on Friday with her bachelor’s degree in neuroscience with minors in chemistry, microbiology and immunology from the University of Miami’s College of Arts and Sciences.
“A lot of people don’t even understand what research is and that it’s a career option,” said Arnold, who believes early exposure to science played a huge role in his affinity for the subject. . “I’m such an independent thinker and realized that research allows me to work individually while making a difference.”
Arnold was originally a microbiology major, but after her first semester, she wanted more of a challenge. Once she made the switch, she said the neuroscience program challenged her in new ways.
“There came a time in my college career when I really enjoyed what I was learning,” Arnold said. “I felt so much more engaged in the classroom the last two years.”
While Arnold knows that the University of Miami prepared her perfectly to shine at Harvard University, she was initially intimidated by the doctoral program offer.
“When I went to visit their campus, I was one of three undergrads there. Everyone around me was so much older. But at the same time, it tells me I’m just as competitive than this pool of candidates,” Arnold said. “I applied to Harvard because that’s where I felt I deserved to be. the result was worth it.
As an undergrad, Arnold found her own path and sometimes even took the road less traveled to achieve some of her important goals. From being the minority in nearly every lab or summer research program where she conducted research to being the only member initiated in the fall of 2020 into the Mu Nu Chapter of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc., a sorority Historically black, Arnold said she is privileged for every experience that made her who she is today.
For the past two years, Arnold has served as the president of his sorority. In her role, she organized numerous community service events and raised hundreds of donations for breast cancer awareness and a local women’s shelter, all of which culminated in one of her proudest moments: winning five award from the Association of Greek Letter Organization.
“Joining my sorority has helped me build my independence and learn to trust my own abilities,” Arnold said. “Overall, I’ve been very lucky to be smart, to be in the right places at the right time, to meet the right people, and to participate in programs that I could only dream of participating in,” said said Arnold.
Already looking to the future, Arnold said that once she graduates from Harvard, she hopes to open her own research institution and affiliate with a historically black college or university to show students that research is a career option. .
“I want to motivate black students to show them that it’s a possibility,” she said. “Because ultimately, if you see someone who looks like you. . . then you know you can do it too.