NEW FEATURE DESIGNED TO INSPIRE: October Student of the month

Oct. 16, 2019


Students from all backgrounds and with diverse life goals energize the Honors College. Student of the Month leads off with Maryan Hassan, a sophomore born 9,000 miles from Tucson, and a scholar with an impact on the University of Arizona even as she pursues a future as a Nurse Practitioner.


Name: Maryan Hassan

Major(s): Pre-Nursing with an Africana Studies minor

Year in school: Sophomore

Hometown: Born in Somalia, with two years spent in a refugee camp in Kenya. Maryan has lived the past 12 years in Tucson.


Co-Director of Pride Alliance under the LGBTQ Resource Center

Black Student Union: Campus Outreach and Communications

Leisure Pursuits: Photography as it is “therapeutic and relaxing”

Research Projects: “Currently, I am focused more on civic engagement than research. For my Honors Thesis, I want to focus on Health Disparities in under-privileged and under-represented populations.”

Plans after graduation:  “I plan to get my RN and stay in Tucson while getting some work experience for a few years. Eventually, I’d like to go the University of Pennsylvania and become a Nurse Practitioner.” 


What is something you have done during your time at UA of which you are especially proud?

“Last month, a student on campus was attacked due to his racial identity. I helped draft the letter that went out campus-wide to better express how the attack impacted Black students. After the protest, the Dean of Students asked for my help in navigating the situation, and I held conversations with President Robbins and UAPD asking for policy changes, action plans and follow-through.

“At first, I was afraid to speak out but I was able to move past my fear and be in the moment with people who cared about the same things.  Taking this action with my peers made me feel whole and validated my existence, my position, and efforts.”

What message do you have for other Honors students on finding their own success?

“Step out of your comfort zone. Don’t just go through the motions of your life. Don’t let being a student stop you from educating yourself and taking action. Challenge the things that you don’t believe in. Network with others to find a community that sees you as you are, and not only supports you, but also is an ally in taking action on things that are important.

“Putting yourself out there can be exhausting and a real strain on your body. Take care of yourself. Take time to reflect and process your feelings. You must retreat and rejuvenate yourself so you can get out there and fight some more.”


She is smart, asking important questions to make our campus a better place. When I found out how full her plate was on the first day of my class, I suggested she drop a class that requires 50 hours of volunteer work outside the classroom. She shared with me that she values serving others and finds happiness in community. I am so grateful she decided to stay in the class. As her teacher, I have already learned so much from her and the passion that drives her action. She is an outstanding student who lives each day to make a difference and is fearless in her actions.” – Lysette Davi, Assistant Director, Student Engagement


To nominate a peer for Student of the Month, please click HERE and complete the submission form. All nominations are subject to Honors College faculty review, approval, and editing for publication.