Home of the Delta Kings

Stagg Online

Home of the Delta Kings

Stagg Online

Home of the Delta Kings

Stagg Online



Sami Nand hopes to be a pharmacist to finish the journey his mother started.

Sami Nand is sitting at the back of a science classroom at lunch with his nose stuffed into one of the old biology books. He holds the binding that is falling off the side as he reads, no one can break his concentration.

This is how he spent most of last year’s lunch periods, his mind far off in the wondrous world of cell division and homeostasis.

The sophomore aspires to be a pharmacist.

Nearly everyone who knows Nand knows of his future career plans. They know that he takes rigorous science and health classes to become a pharmacist, like he has always dreamed of.

They know that he has the brains and mindset to become anything he wishes.

What they don’t know is why he wants to be a pharmacist or why he is so dedicated to learning, while most could care less.

They don’t know that his mother passed away when he was 8 years old. With a nervous smile on his face he pushes out, “She’s my inspiration.”

His mother was studying to be a pharmacist when she passed away. He decided from that day on that he would pick up where she left off and finish her dream. He would take the path that she started to take, to finish her journey.

History teacher Audrey Weir- Graham has made sure that Nand was included in a University of the Pacific mentorship program because she knows of his aspirations.

“He has an inquisitive mind,” Weir-Graham said.

She then notes that he is the kind of student who doesn’t need “external motivation.” She said that Nand loves to learn, inside and out of the classroom.

From the obvious trauma of his mother’s death, Nand found that it brought his family a little bit closer. They all learned to work together, despite the difficulties.

“Growing up in a single-parent household is hard,” Nand said. “But because of that, me and my sisters get along very well.”

The loss of his mother also created a barrier when asking for help.

“She was really smart and now I can’t ask for her help on anything,” he said.

However, he finds that he can help his two sisters and brother with their schoolwork. As well as the hardship of living in a single-parent household, Nand faces economic trouble.

“We don’t live in a rich household,” he said, gesturing to his clothes, “I shop at the thrift store.”

Fellow sophomore Miguel Gaitan said that he would have “never guessed” that Nand had been through as much as he had.

“Everyone gravitates towards him when we study in the Homework Center,” he said. “Sami’s hecka smart.”

In classrooms, he is known for his intelligence and strangely, this brings even more conflict to his life.

“I have to work so much harder because I understand how hard it actually is in the world,” he said.

Nand understands how cruel the world can be. He knows that life isn’t a walk in the park. That’s what makes him work that much harder.

Though he has been through more than most people have, he doesn’t share his story often. He doesn’t like to be pitied so he keeps it all to himself.

He doesn’t want people to remove their focus from what matters.

“I want people to look at what I’ve accomplished, not what I’ve been through,” he said.

With a sincere tone, he talks about his future. He said that he’s not like most kids. He’s not like the ones who don’t care.

“I don’t want to be ‘could have been,’” he said. “I want to be.”

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