Toni Patterson - Commitment
Toni Patterson started her academic career at four-years-old in the first grade. She entered North Carolina as a 16-year-old freshman boasting a 4.3 GPA. To say she was ahead of the game is an understatement.
Now, as an 18-year-old junior, majoring in bio-engineering, this honor student holds a 3.83 GPA, is a Dowdy Scholar and a mentor in the University’s Honors Program. She’s on target with taking her game to the next level.
“It comes natural to me, but I still have to work hard,” she said. “I learn from my accomplishments as well as my mistakes,” she admitted.
The Charlotte, N.C. native followed in her sister’s footsteps to A&T, very aware of her academic and career goals.
“When I was in my senior year in high school, someone did a presentation in my class about engineering. It was so amazing. I knew after that I had found my calling,” she said.
Patterson is the recipient of the National Action Council for Minority Engineers scholarship and holds membership in Alpha Lambda Delta, Alpha Kappa Mu and Tau Beta Phi honor societies. She is a member of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) currently serving as Miss NSBE and is a senator for the student government association.
When Patterson is not focused on her own studies, she is busy helping other students.
“I enjoy working as a mentor. My major is small so when I see an honor student in my major, I want to help them out as much as I can,” she said. “I meet with them, help them with homework and with picking the right classes,” she added.
She is grateful for the friends and support system she has made at A&T.
“The best part of being an Aggie is all of the relationships I have built since I’ve been here. I try and surround myself with people in the same discipline so that I can continue to maintain my GPA. We all need that support from each other,” Patterson said.
For as long as she can remember, she’s been committed to being the best she can be.
While at A&T, Patterson completed two internships - Abbott Vascular, Inc. in Temecula, Calif. and Abbott Diabetes Care in Alameda, Calif. – which helped peak her interest in the field of medicine.
“I learned a lot through my internships, especially the business side of the industry. I eventually want to go to graduate school. I am thinking of studying more about medical devices, such as pacemakers and heart stints and prosthetics,” she said.
“I’ve always wanted to discover the cure for something since I was little. I wanted to come up with a cure for all of these diseases we have,” she recalled.
“I used to always say I want to find the cure for cancer,” she said.
Her age has always played a factor in her performance, she said, but it’s never stopped her from achieving her goals.
“Since I am always the youngest in my class, I always felt like I had to prove myself. It made me study a little more and work harder to get those extra points.”
Her hard work and determination has paid off. Patterson is gearing up for the Honors Program trip to Ghana next semester.
She is thankful for the experiences she has had at A&T and plans to keep her focus on the many opportunities that lie ahead.
“I definitely plan on making an impact on society.”