Graduate Profiles: Jamal Sheriff
Jamal Sheriff of Hobart, IN recently graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Engineering & Sciences. He studied Biology with a concentration in Ecology and Evolution.
Sheriff currently works as a Park Ranger at the Indiana Dunes National Park and is part of an on-site research project involving plant communities. He landed this research project after seeking Dr. Young Choi, a professor in the Department of Biological Sciences. “I hadn’t really had a class with Dr. Choi, but I knew he’s a plant ecologist, so I asked if he would be interested in working on this research project. He was all in without hesitation,” Sheriff stated. “The project has been going for a little over a year and our goal is to present this research at conferences. It’s definitely been a very unforgettable, hands-on experience.”
Along with the opportunity to get involved in research, there were additional resources that helped Sheriff succeed. Since he is a soldier in the Indiana National Guard, Sheriff utilized the Veterans Center regarding benefits. He is also involved in the McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program, which provides graduate educational opportunities to students who qualify. He added, “That involvement as well as the experience with faculty at PNW really pushed me to pursue my doctorate.”
Sheriff has been accepted into a Ph.D. program and is on his way to becoming a university professor. “To me, the most important thing is being happy, enjoying what you’re learning and continuing to do the best that you can,” he concluded. “Never compare yourself to others. Just focus on Powering Onward and creating your own path.”