Hi friends! I am Nicolas and I am a third year biological sciences major, minoring in medical anthropology. As a first generation college student, I was raised with strong education values. That, along with my natural curiosity for life, has drawn me to opportunities where I get to immerse myself in new environments and learn from diverse groups of people. This is why I am actively involved in other groups on campus. As a Resident Advisor for Student Housing, I guide first year students as they grow and thrive while experiencing their new surroundings and begin building their home. As a Peer Health Educator on campus, I actively promote wellness through workshops and events regarding topics such as self care and stress management. Through my experiences in Flying Samaritans at UC Irvine, I have volunteered at a free clinic in El Testerazo, Mexico, and have grown and learned so much from the patients in that community. Two elements that I felt were definitely missing in my life, however, were research and sustainability. Despite being a Southern California city boy at heart, I have always had a penchant for adventures in nature where I can get dirt on my skin and under my nails but all the more enlightened. Luckily, I was introduced to the Costa Rica Program, and I am very much looking forward to sharing my love for the world and being inspired by this beautiful country and its people. As an aspiring healthcare provider, I understand how significantly interconnected the health of this earth is to our health. I hope through this program, I will learn more about how we as a community can do better to practice sustainability and protect the world we live in. Pura Vida!