B.S., Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Summa Cum Laude
Hometown: Silver Spring, Maryland
Plans: M.D./Ph.D., Emory University School of Medicine
"UMBC prepares its students to be productive members of society who strive to understand others and bring people together. I came to UMBC thinking I knew what I wanted to do, and I am leaving with a refined version of my goals, which reflect the values of inclusivity, support, and grit."
Valedictorian Eudorah Vital is remarkable not just in her tremendous academic success and dedication to high-level scholarship, but also in her drive to support fellow students and the broader Baltimore community.
A Meyerhoff Scholar and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Scholar since her freshman year, Vital dived into research as soon as she arrived at UMBC. She quickly advanced to independent research in Rachel Brewster’s developmental biology lab, learning to troubleshoot challenges on her own. Soon, she was mentoring undergraduates newer to the lab. As a result of her dedication to her work, Vital has co-authored two papers in top-tier academic journals, and a third is on its way.This photo “symbolizes my UMBC journey, as it shows that I did not make it through alone,” says Eudorah Vital. “I had many friends who encouraged me along the way.” Photo courtesy Eudorah Vital.
Vital, who is also a MARC U*STAR Scholar, goes above and beyond to support others. She serves as a peer supplemental instructor for organic chemistry courses and works as a tutor in the Chemistry Tutorial Center, often creating her own worksheets to help struggling students. As a member of Phi Delta Epsilon, an international co-ed medical fraternity, Vital has volunteered often at Baltimore City food kitchens and health fairs.
It is her joint commitment to both research and supporting people on a more personal level that led Vital to choose an M.D./Ph.D. graduate program. Her goal to pursue clinically relevant research in a diverse and inclusive environment, like the one she has cherished at UMBC, helped her select Emory University’s neurobiology program among the numerous offers she received.
Portrait by Marlayna Demond ‘11 for UMBC.
Article originally appeared on the UMBC News website.