Meet the Class of 2018: Avid Volunteer Took Time Before College to Discern Her Path

Anissa Nashikkar


Published Date: September 04, 2014

When Anissa Nashikkar graduated from high school in 2012, she was very unsure of what she wanted to do. It wasn't that she didn't have any ideas, but rather that she had too many. Faced with indecision, she made the brave and ultimately, for her, wise choice to take some time off before going to college.

To get a better feel for what career path she should take, Nashikkar has spent the past two years volunteering at a variety of places, including North Texas OB/GYN Associates, Creekview Orthodontics, the Akshaya Patra Foundation (an organization that fights poverty, hunger and malnutrition in India), the no-kill animal shelter Operation Kindness and the Nasher Sculpture Center.

"I shadowed the doctors and got to see a lot of interesting things in different areas of the huge health care field," Nashikkar said of some of her volunteer experiences.

For spending money, Nashikkar has also done some pet-sitting and worked part-time at Starbucks.

Nashikkar enjoys history and travel and is an art enthusiast; for a time she had considered working toward her doctorate in art history. She also loves science and animals, however, and has determined that the best route for her is to study biology and attend veterinary school. UD's Core curriculum provides the perfect outlet for her other interests, though; in fact, UD as a whole is exactly what she was looking for: a small, private university that would give her a well-rounded liberal arts foundation and also offer a good study abroad program.

Unsurprisingly, Nashikkar is very excited about the prospect of a semester in Rome.

"Of the schools I was looking at, UD seemed like the best fit for me," Nashikkar said.

Nashikkar's younger sister is a freshman at St. Louis University this fall, so Nashikkar just got back from helping her get settled in her residence hall there. Nashikkar herself will live at home in Plano and commute to UD.

"Right now, I only have classes on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays," Nashikkar said. "So I want to keep doing volunteer work on the other days."

She does hope to be involved in life on campus too, though, and find outlets here for some of her favorite pastimes: playing piano (which she has done since the age of five), yoga, Pilates, swimming and reading.

"I'm excited to meet all the people," Nashikkar said. "And I just think college offers so many opportunities as compared to high school. The world opens up a bit more."

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