Linh Hoang

Linh Hoang Aspires to Be a Pioneer

Chemistry and Psychology | College of Arts and Sciences
Graduation Year: 2017

How has your college program inspired you?

Before going to UMKC, I studied in the Vietnamese school system, which put a heavy emphasis on grades. However, when coming to UMKC, I have had chances to encounter a totally different researching style, which lets me take more control of my own study. I have become more active, and schedule my time to study, work in group and express my needs or opinions. College also has inspired me to aim higher and dream bigger with my future career as well as my life.

What led you to UMKC?

It was easy to find information about UMKC. My friend went here a semester before me. I looked at several schools and UMKC had a good healthcare and scholarship program.

“It will be harder to start a pharmacy business in Vietnam, but the success will be bigger… In Vietnam, I can be a pioneer and have more chance of success.”

What are your lifelong goals?

Finish pre-pharmacy and go to school to be a pharmacist. I want to finish my chemistry and psychology degrees, then work a little before I go to grad school. I’d like to work in the states, but eventually I want to go back to Vietnam. There’s a real need for development there. It will be harder to start a pharmacy business in Vietnam, but the success will be bigger. There is an unfinished law system in Vietnam, and I could do entrepreneurship there. In Vietnam, I can be a pioneer and have more chance of success.

What motto do you live by?

Try to do my best every day and also do things I haven’t done before.

What excites you?

I like to be recognized as good enough and smart enough. I appreciate recognition for the person I am—what I do and how hard I try in my life.

How did you become interested in pharmacy?

My grandpa was a pharmacist and my mom is doing pharmacy and vaccination work in Vietnam, where there is currently a vaccination problem. Some Vietnamese children have received Western vaccines and died because they weren’t designed for the East. I want to do research and have vaccines that are Vietnam-specific, suitable for our climate and our children. That is a long-term goal that inspires me.

Since entering college, what have you learned about yourself?

I have learned about how much pressure I could endure. I also learned that I can study diverse subjects from communication studies to politics to sciences. College actually puts me out of my comfort zone, and I can handle anxiety and awkwardness if I actually attempt and apply myself to the new job.

What’s the best piece of advice you have ever received from a professor?

I came here alone from Vietnam, I struggled a lot with my first semester here, with language and emotions. At that time I received a valuable advice from my academic adviser, who is also my chemistry professor: “As long as you do your best, things only can get better.”

Are you a first-generation college student?

I am not a first-generation college student. My dad also went to college. But I am the first one in my family going to college in a foreign country. I would say that I have opened my mind to accept many new things: values, critical thinking style, priorities. At some points of my life, I feel like I have a mutual understanding of both Western and Eastern cultures, which I can compare and find meaning in many situations.

What’s your greatest fear?

I have a greatest fear that I would not be able to do anything significant in my life. I have traveled a long distance from home to find out who I am, what I want to do with my life and what could make me happy. I am afraid of learning all of that but being unable to apply them to my life.

What is one word that best describes you?

Committed. Some of my friends say hard-headed. When I do something, I always try to make it as perfect as I can. I tend not to give up on my goals, no matter how long they take or difficult they are.