In this series, Elon College, the College of Arts and Sciences is shining the spotlight on distinguished members of the Class of 2022 from a wide array of disciplines.
A Fulbright finalist, Honors Fellow and Odyssey Scholar who earned a B.S. in Engineering with a biomedical concentration and minored in chemistry, Samantha Dominguez ’22 will spend the coming year teaching in English in the Czech Republic.
Growing up in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, Dominguez was first captivated by biomedical engineering in high school while watching video of a surgeon operating on a patient remotely using video-assisted robotic thoracoscopy.
“I chose biomedical engineering because I can use the things I learn to improve the world around me,” Dominguez said.
Dominguez was recognized with the Phillips-Perry Black Excellence Award for Highest GPA her first and senior years, the Excellence in Engineering Award in 2022, and was the Colonial Athletic Association Institutional Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2021-22. She is a member of Phi Kappa Phi and Phi Betta Kappa honor societies.
In addition to academics, Dominguez was a standout member of the Women’s Soccer Team, which won the CAA Championship in 2020. She was named Defensive Player of the Year in 2019.
How did you decide to survey local elementary school teachers about engineering education?
My project was titled, “Wait…what is engineering?: Teacher and Student Perspectives on STEM Education in Central North Carolina.” I chose this topic because I am passionate about science and more specifically I am passionate about encouraging young people to pursue science. I understand that I am very fortunate to have the opportunities to grow in my STEM identity and that other students are not afforded the same opportunities. This project was my way of giving back.
My mentor was Dr. Sirena Hargrove-Leak. She pushed to reach higher and dream bigger than I ever have before.
What were some of your most profound experiences at Elon?
I had the opportunity to study abroad in Italy this past J-term and it really broadened my view of the world. My eyes were opened to a completely different culture and it really changed how I viewed my own place and role in the world. It showed me how interconnected we all are even halfway across the globe.
We won the CAA championship for the varsity women’s soccer team in 2020, which was definitely a highlight of my experience!
What advice would you give future students?
Say yes! Opportunity comes in all shapes and sizes and you never know what doors might be opened or memories might be made when people invite you to participate in things. You don’t want to miss out, so try and say yes more times than you say no.