Sreevidhya (Vidhya) Balasubramanian is a Levine Scholar majoring in economics and public health.
What major(s) are you pursuing and why?
Currently, I am an economics and public health double major. I absolutely love both fields of study, so why have to chose between them? Moreover, I hope to mold my career into one that uses both disciplines - such as healthcare policy work or simply healthcare economics.
Why did you choose the Belk College of Business/UNC Charlotte?
I chose the Belk College of Business for the vast number of opportunities it offers. Charlotte is a major banking city and the Belk College of Business sets its students up with a tremendous number of opportunities within the Charlotte community and beyond.
What activities are you involved in when not working or studying?
When I’m not working, studying, or doing something school related, you can catch me at practice with my UNC Charlotte dance team - Isharee. Isharee is a competing Bollywood dance team with which I have had the chance to travel to Columbia, S.C., Tampa, Florida, and Athens, Georgia thus far!
What is your involvement in Women in Business and why is it important to you?
Starting the beginning of my junior year, I had the honor of becoming an undergraduate ambassador for the Women in Business Initiative. This opportunity has been significant and meaningful for a number of reasons. Though at an all-time high, only 6 percent of Fortune 500 companies have a female CEO. Women across the nation are doing so much better in regards to career advancements and accomplishments; but, unfortunately, we are still not at equality with men at similar positions in their lives. Women in Business is important to me because it strives to diverge from this imbalance by helping young women reach their full potential through career building workshops, mentorships, and coffee-hour discussions on relevant issues for females in the work world.
What has been the best part of your academic experience so far?
This semester I got the chance to get knee deep in research within the public health department. As an undergraduate research assistant, I worked with Dr. Forthofer, the chair of the public health department, on biomarker feasibility as an appropriate method to pre-diagnosis chronic diseases in stressed populations. Needless to say, I am so excited for all that this opportunity is going to teach me as I continue working with the research team.
How would you describe the Belk College of Business to someone who is thinking about applying?
If you’re looking for a group of caring and informative professors, a myraid of different business opportunities here in the Charlotte area and beyond, and the chance to meet many like-minded and ambitious students like yourself…..then you definitely need to apply to the Belk College of Business!
How has the Levine Scholarship Program helped you as you pursue your educational and professional goals?
The Levine Scholarship has granted me the possibility to go above and beyond what I previously thought possible. Whether it was backpacking through the Absaroka mountain range before starting college, or having the opportunity to spend a month in Shanghai studying their health-care system, I would not be able to do any of it without the Levine Scholarship Program. Apart from just the financial resources, the scholarship comes with a tight-knit community composed of the supportive staff and the family of fellow students in the cohort. No matter what, I know someone will have my back and help me.
What was it like for you and your family when you found out you were accepted into the Levine Scholars program? What did it mean to you?
For my family and me, the Levine Scholarship was nothing short of a dream come true. For my parents, the burden of putting three children through college became a lot smaller. For me, the joy of all the different opportunities (accompanied by the necessary financial assets) now possible for my undergraduate education was overwhelmingly exciting.
What does your Levine Scholars research project involve?
My research under the Levine Scholars Program is a fellowship through the Academy for Population Health Innovation (APHI). APHI is a partnership through Mecklenburg County Health Department and UNC Charlotte. Through this organization, I am an active part of the Post-Partum Depression screening research team that aims to assess mothers with infants under 1 year of age for depressive symptoms at community-based Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) county clinics.The research team aims to uncover the existing prevalence of Post-Partum Depression among low-income mothers in Mecklenburg County and provide all mothers with indicated symptoms additional free and/or low-cost case management services.
What are your plans after graduation?
I’m currently a pre-med student…..so fingers crossed on medical school!