Arvind Rajan has witnessed the impact a person can make in the lives of others. While interning and watching surgery cases at the Dr. Muthusamy Hospital in a rural part of India for more than a month, Rajan decided general surgery is his future.
“Not only do I want to practice in a hospital, but I also want to pursue programs like Doctors without Borders and use my expertise to help those that do not have ready access to medical treatment,” Rajan said.
The 18-year-old senior from Raleigh is a student at William G. Enloe High School and is the son of Thiruppathi Rajan Gopalakrishnan and Sudha Rajan. He is one of 20 freshmen entering East Carolina University this fall as an EC Scholar, the most prestigious undergraduate academic scholarship program offered at the university.
“To me, being an EC Scholar is not only a huge honor but it is an endowed responsibility,” Rajan said. “I feel like I am a representation of East Carolina University’s image, and through my actions and pursuits I have the ability to shape that image.”
Rajan’s decision to choose ECU was multifaceted.
“I chose ECU because of the opportunities I saw outside of academics,” Rajan said. “The ultimate decision maker was the EC Scholars program. I have access to amazing staff support and facilities to ultimately allow me to achieve my goals.”
While at ECU, Rajan looks forward to getting involved in research at the Brody School of Medicine and taking full advantage of his study abroad opportunity.
“Although I do not know where I want to study abroad, I know that I want to use my study abroad experience to explore health care in other countries,” Rajan said. “I want to volunteer abroad at medical clinics and use my knowledge to help disadvantaged communities in these areas.”
At Enloe High, Rajan is active in a number of organizations. He has served as president of the Enloe Medical Bioscience Academy/National Academy Foundation; as a member and service head of the National Honor Society, planning service projects for more than 90 local chapter members; and founding board member, tutor and webmaster for the school’s Future Chemists of America.
Rajan is a junior assistant scoutmaster with the Boy Scouts of America and earned Eagle Scout rank in 2016. He is a second-degree black belt in taekwondo and is an assistant instructor at Black Belt World, a taekwondo school in Knightdale, where he provides self-defense training and teaches weekly classes of all levels to students ages 4 to 60.
This summer, Rajan will continue working at the taekwondo school and spend time with his family and friends. He hopes to secure a job as a pharmacy technician.
The EC Scholars merit scholarship recognizes outstanding academic performance, commitment to community engagement and strong leadership skills. Recipients receive an Honors College scholarship for four years, along with a stipend for study abroad, for a total value of nearly $62,000.
“I want to volunteer abroad at medical clinics and use my knowledge to help disadvantaged communities.”
High school: William G. Enloe High School
Intended major: Biomedical engineering