Gabriela Carrillo '14, '22
Currently: Post-doctoral training at Harvard
Degrees: Psychology; translational biology, medicine, and health
Class years: 2014, 2022
On Ut Prosim: Carrillo, a California native, has been involved in numerous community engagement events throughout her times at Virginia Tech. She has worked with autistic children, volunteered as a mentor to young women at Virginia Western Community College who were interested in STEM fields, been a mentor for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest Virginia, interned with the Women’s Resource Center of the New River Valley, volunteered with the RAFT Community Crisis Center, and served as a Carilion hospice care volunteer.
“It's certainly not about the number of hours that you volunteer,” Carrillo said. “I see service as a way to build and strengthen our community. I think you can only do that when you truly integrate into the community, when you’re able to listen to other people’s stories and perspectives and understand the context of how your community has been shaped. Service allows you that opportunity.”
On how Virginia Tech impacted her: “My first year at Virginia Tech, I joined a living-learning community called SERVE where I learned about servant-leadership. I tend to be a competitive and ambitious person, but that experience taught me how to selflessly realign my own personal goals to benefit the community as a whole. ... I really enjoyed it. It also catalyzed my career transition into biomedical research. In everything I do now, I strive to uphold Virginia Tech's motto, That I May Serve, as it has brought so much meaning and purpose to my life.”
On the importance of service for Virginia Tech’s future: “I think Ut Prosim is ingrained in our identity as Hokies. To me, that’s the definition of a Hokie. It’s important to consider, too, that Virginia Tech is expanding quickly throughout the commonwealth. We also have campuses in many countries and ties with universities across the globe. With such growth and distance between all the campuses, we need something that really brings us all together. I think service will be the common thread and bond that we all share, and so it’s important to maintain that moving forward.”