Christian Avila

Major: Biology

Year: Junior

How do you want to change the world? 

Growing up, I thought that having a lot of money and a nice car would make me happy. After spending only a short time volunteering with my fire department and at Food For Lane County, I have learned that being a part of those groups makes me the happiest. I've learned how suddenly a person's life can change for the worse but also how much of a difference a small group can make. Now I know that helping others is the most meaningful way of spending my life.

What are you proud to have been involved with at the University of Oregon? 

At UO, I learned to have confidence in myself after I signed up for a FIG and did not realize that I accidentally signed up for honors chemistry. I was scared, but I stuck with it. I learned that teaming up with my peers made the exams a lot more manageable. Now, at the start of every term, I try my best to team up with diligent people and as a result, my family here in Eugene keeps on growing.

Who is your biggest role model and why?

My biggest role model is my younger sister. She is the most loyal person I know and is very passionate about serving the community as a volunteer fire fighter. She spends a lot of time driving so that she can keep on learning more in fire training and so that she completes her EMT and Paramedicine program at Lane. I also love that she proves me wrong all the time.

Which fictional character is most like yourself?

I don't know which character is most like me, but I wish I could experience what it is like to be a part of Stranger Things. I like the adventures that those kids go on and the old (now classic) cars that everyone drives in the show. Sometimes I feel like the big nerd: Bob; and other times I feel like the little nerd: Dustin.

What are your goals after college?

I would like to serve my community as a pediatric plastic surgeon. I was inspired after seeing a commercial about Operation Smile: an organization that provides free surgery to children who are born with a cleft lip or cleft palate. My motivation has only grown after seeing the attention provided to my cousin by a plastic surgeon after her horrible car accident.

What is one fun fact about you?

I spent more than two weeks backpacking in North Cascades National Park in high school with a bunch of strangers my age. We each carried half our weight in food and gear, canoed and swam in the beautiful Ross lake, while only depending on our toothbrushes and one tube of toothpaste for hygiene.

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