Odyssey Scholars » Mariam


Mariam (Junior)

After going through the trauma and violence of fleeing their countries and immigrating to the United States, many immigrants are denied the right to healthcare. I have always been interested in politics and human rights. I believe the health of any human should not be a political issue but, rather, a human rights issue. It’s important to understand that healthcare should be a right for all people. I never knew much about healthcare, and healthcare access has just begun to get the attention it deserves. The only thing I stood with was that no one should have to die just because of their life experiences and disparities they cannot control. I joined Odyssey Scholars in hopes of helping to provide healthcare to those who need it most. 

I started with a research question about how healthcare access for those who fall below the poverty line in this country compares to a country with universal healthcare. With this topic, I hoped to research how universal healthcare positively impacts those in poverty, and what it would take for the U.S. to reach universal healthcare. Unfortunately, the subject is just too broad, so I moved in a slightly different direction. I considered what part of healthcare access I would like to know more about and landed on immigrantation in the United States. 

This was the perfect opportunity to combine both of my interests. I looked into each state’s policies regarding healthcare access for undocumented immigrants. After researching the policies, I chose to focus on how to improve the U.S.’s policies on access to healthcare for undocumented immigrants. I have decided to study policies in the states with the most undocumented immigrant populations, including New York, New Jersey, California, and New Mexico.

Over the past month, I have researched different topics until I was confident in what I wanted to study. It was hard to maintain the passion I had in the beginning, but now I’m content with my project. I am eager to learn more about my topic and help improve the policies on access to healthcare for those who need it most.