Make a Difference

Shaan - Canton, Michigan
Entered on April 19, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

From the age of 9 I knew I was going to make a difference in this world. Always trying to fix up my broken toys that my older brother loved breaking, especially my beloved figurines. However back to usable condition, I wouldn’t keep them for myself; I would donate them to charity. I believed in helping people, I did the best any 9 year old could do to fix them by placing their broken legs or arms back on with glue or any other means, so another child could have a toy that would brighten up their life, just as it did mine.

Not knowing what I wanted to do in life I kind of lived life aimlessly, and basically let my parents take on the roll of deciding for me. As any foreign parents would want their child to become is exactly what they wanted for me, they wanted me to become a doctor. As years went on, I became more rebellious and decided to take control of my future.

Not taking the traditional role that students usually take of taking skill set analyzing exams, I chose a different route by taking on many different jobs/ volunteer work each summer. I worked with an engineer company as an engineer tech one summer, and as a pharmacy tech the next. One summer found myself volunteering at a senior home. Working there really got me closer to the elderly and gave me a better perspective of how they feel. It really opened my eyes, and got me to think about how I would take care of my parents when they grew too old to mend for themselves. During junior year of high school I got an opportunity to shadow a friend of the family who took care and treated cancer patients for a living at Henry Ford Hospital. Here I got to meet many cancer patients going through various treatments and dealing with various problems, but at the time I didn’t think much of it. That is until I met a patient who even though she knew she was dieing, always looked at life optimistically and never hesitated to crack a joke a two. There was something about this particular individual that opened my eyes to the world of cancer. Something that made my heart warm up and something that started giving me repetitive dreams about stumbling across a cure for cancer right under our noses. Could it have been that she was only 40 years old and even though her time was almost up, she wasn’t afraid of death?

I knew that I wanted to make a difference in the world and I knew I wanted to help people. What would be a better way to help as many people as I could than by contributing for the Race Against Cancer. I raised more than anyone could have ever expected. I went to corporations, business, and community organizations. I went to relatives and complete strangers for contributions, and I succeeded in gaining vast amount of monetary pledges to help find a cure. I wanted to be the guy to bring civilization that much closer to finding the cure for cancer. People don’t always need to loose someone or have a loved one go through the pain of chemotherapy to give them the dedication and devotion in helping to find a cure. I grew up with a perfectly healthy family and by chance, grew up with perfectly healthy friends as well. If someone can loose a loved one to a heart disease and than come out to be the best in cardiology, which is to say that just because I haven’t lost a loved one to cancer that I wont come out to be the best in cancer research. Who knows one day I might actually make a difference and make that lady in the Oncology wards, smile that much brighter.