I started playing soccer when I was about 6, and played until I was 13 years old. During that time, I thought that I was going to play varsity soccer in highschool, and that was that. However, there was an announcement that played over my 8th grade classroom that presented us students with a new team arising in our school: cross country. I was always the fastest kid on the soccer field, but I never thought about running cross country. My dad was very excited about this idea however, since he ran in highschool, and a little bit in college. I tried it out, and fell in love with the competition and the hard work that had to be out in. My favorite aspect of the sport, is that hard work pays off. If I slack during practice, and cut corners during long runs, then my race will be poor. On the flip side, if I push myself on runs , workouts, and core, then my races turn out well. I ended up quitting soccer only half a year into running. I ran indoor track with the highschool boys, and that translated into the spring. During my freshman year, I was consistently on varsity until the last two races. I ended up breaking 18 at the regional open race, and was put on the state team. I have been to states every year since. My sophomore year wasn’t too exciting, and junior year was a disappointment. I went into my junior year of track with low expectations and a pitiful training plan. However, my inspiring coach (Dave Wolbert) never gave up hope. He placed me in the 4x800m and saw that I had some talent for mid distance. I went from 2:20s to 2:04 in 3 races. Our 4x800 team made it to states and ended up getting 6th in the state, which was an awesome and encouraging event. I went into my summer training with revenge for my last season on the brain. I became very dedicated to not only my training, but the team as the whole since I was now the captain. After a summer of hard work, I was able to blow past the 17s with a 16:15 my second race. What my experiences with this wonderful sport so far have taught me, is that hard work and confidence is key. My dream is that I’ll be able to run at an academically acclaimed university so that I can pursue my career and athletic goals.
Outside of Athletics:
In a single day, around 385,000 babies are born worldwide (according to babycenter.com. July 11, 2021). I was born on January 7th, 2004, alongside hundreds of thousands of other souls. The question that arises when I think about the sheer numbers of lives born a day is: what is my purpose? I was born in Redford Michigan, and I lived there until I was 12. My family and I then moved to the city of Flint, where I still reside. Here, in Flint, I have experienced both ends of the class spectrum: country clubs and symphony orchestras, to running Covid-19 vaccinations drives for those with limited access and co-running the giving tree foundation for kids in need around the Flint area. These experiences have helped develop what I perceive my purpose to be: bettering the health of others, especially within the community. My favorite experience was running the Covid-19 vaccine drive on May 10th, 2021 at Flint Southwestern Highschool. There, I was able to interact with a variety of people in my community. Patients consisted of fellow classmates, and people who I have never met, coming from the heart of Flint because they saw what I was doing on our local news channel. Another positive event I helped organize in Flint was the blood pressure screening event. This took place at the Flint Farmers market for hundreds of people. Our objective was to screen willing participants for high blood pressure, record the numbers, and advise the participants what to do next to address their high blood pressure. These events mean so much to me because they cemented my desire to work in healthcare. I believe my purpose is to help people achieve better health. My goals and actions along the way are in place to further educate myself and better myself so that I am able to become the community doctor I aspire to be. The main reason I believe my purpose is to be a healthcare professional is that I am happiest when I am helping others, and improving people’s lives and health. My biggest influences for this purpose and aspiration are my father, Dr. Bobby Mukkamala, Dr. Patrick Atkinson, and the Flint community. These people have taught me so much when it comes to improving the conditions of people’s lives, and the community itself. When I am unsure of what my next step should be, I reach out to these mentors because they have been there for me and have helped me contemplate my career and life goals. I am inspired to do the same for my peers, my community, and my future patients.