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Fatima Frausto’s parents came from Zacatecas and worked very hard to give her a better future and instill in her a love for learning.
This foundation helped propel her to excel in school while learning about public health.
Frausto attended UT Austin where she found her calling in conducting research about reproductive health and the Latinx experience. She is now working on her master’s degree of public health in health promotion and behavioral sciences at the UT Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health.
She has personally seen and experienced health inequities. This is something she intends to address in her future research.
To further her experience and education, Frausto applied for the Éxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program.
The Éxito! program, led by Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez at UT Health San Antonio with support from the National Cancer Institute, recruits 25 master’s-level students and professionals each year for a five-day summer institute and optional internships to promote doctoral degrees and careers in Latino cancer. A recent study found significant increases in summer institute participants’ confidence to apply to a doctoral program and academic self-efficacy.
“Making the decision to obtain a doctoral degree is a decision I have agonized over for months. I know I want to spend some time working on research/health equity initiatives so I can get the experience. After attending the [Éxito! summer] institute, I am going to try and stick to my plan to apply next fall, so I can enter a doctoral program in 2020,” Frausto said.
She also had some advice for those thinking of applying to the program.
“Do it! Don’t be afraid! I was a little uneasy about what to expect, especially since I’m prone to anxiety as it is. But attending was a great decision, and it was helpful to push me to reevaluate what I want to do, what I want to research, and how I’m going to get there.”
Editor’s Note: This is the story of a graduate of the 2018 Èxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program at UT Health San Antonio, the headquarters of the Salud America! program. Apply now for Èxito! 2019.