Student Spotlight: Christiana Okafor, Center for Women’s Heart & Vascular Health

“I really just wanted to find opportunities around me to channel my passion. I care a lot about medicine and working with different communities, and THI does that, so I wanted to be a part of it.” – Christiana OkaforEMERGE Scholar and student intern for the Center for Women’s Heart & Vascular Health.


Since joining the Texas Heart Institute during the summer of 2018, Okafor has taken on various roles in her department, from performing administrative tasks to assisting staff with the research assignments. Her attention to detail has left a strong impression on the department.


Okafor says that she enjoys all the activities that she has been involved with at THI. Now, in her second year at THI, Okafor is setting out to advance her passion for science. “I’ve known I wanted to go into medicine for the longest time, and spending the last two summers working at THI helped me figure out what I was excited about.”


Okafor is no stranger to community engagement. At her high school, Okafor took part in many leadership organizations, such as the National Honor Society and the Business Professionals of America. “Volunteering is something important to me,” says Okafor. “I think the best way to spend your time is helping others.”


In her time interning, Okafor said her strongest interest was community outreach. “My favorite part is going to events and having conversations with people and communities about their health.” Having recently graduated from the High School for Law and Justice in the Houston Independent School District (HISD), and planning to start college in the fall, Okafor’s experiences at THI have prepared her to pursue her academic career.

“I’m thankful for THI and the way it has let me get close to what I want to do,” says Okafor.

She will be attending Bowdoin College in Maine, double majoring in biomedical science and political science. Okafor plans to pursue medical school and to work with underprivileged communities.

“Christiana is an exceptionally bright individual and is passionate about everything she does. We are so proud of her accomplishments, and we are honored to welcome her to our Community Ambassador Program,” said Stephanie Coulter, MD

A special thank you to our Visual Communications Student Intern, Carlos Uribe for his help with this article.