Scholarships helped May Nguyen graduate from University of Houston with a relatively small amount of debt. Now, she and her husband, Greg Bounds, want to give more students the chance to focus on careers rather than worry about the financial burdens of college. They are establishing the Greg Bounds and Bich-May Nguyen Undergraduate Biology Scholarship Endowment.
“Since I wasn’t hampered by debt, I was able to pursue more expensive graduate studies,” said Nguyen, who graduated in 2003 with a B.S. in biology. She went on to receive a medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine and an M.P.H. from Harvard School of Public Health.
“We are interested in education and in making college affordable,” Bounds said. “Through this investment in NSM, we can support the young talent who will contribute to scientific knowledge and innovation.”
For Nguyen, attending UH with its diverse student body helped her to be more comfortable around and to empathize with people from all walks of life. After graduating from medical school, she pursued a specialty in family medicine and chose to work with Houston’s underserved, urban population. “Every day I take care of socially disadvantaged people, the majority of whom do not speak English as their primary language,” she said.
The young couple recognizes that UH is full of hard-working students. “Many students are taking full- or part-time classes and working to support themselves or their families,” Nguyen said. “We want to ease the financial burden for some of them.”
Bounds recently decided to change careers and return to school. Where did he choose to go? University of Houston. “I was so impressed with the changes at UH in the past decade that I wanted to benefit from them,” he said. Bounds will graduate in 2014 with a B.S. in sociology.
Through their scholarship endowment, Bounds and Nguyen know they will impact future UH biology undergrads and give them the opportunity to pursue their dreams.
“We hope more people who have been as lucky as us will support the university in its academic mission and help its most valuable asset – the students,” they said.