The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Student Tiffany Love to represent SBCC in prestigious program

Diana Aguilar
Tiffany Love in front of artwork displayed in Campus Center Room 226 on Tuesday, May 1, at Santa Barbara City College. Love is a member of the Black Student Union, and recently was accepted into the UCSB Smithsonian Scholars Program, which will take her to Washington D.C. this summer. Love, a biology major, is starting a club at City College called Society of Black Scientists and Engineers.

City College’s Tiffany Love, a highly active member of the Black Student Union, was accepted into the UCSB-Smithsonian Scholars Program Summer Experience, a prestigious summer program for STEM students.

“I feel special. I feel like the underdog. Whenever I tell people what I do, they are surprised,” Love said. “Black students are categorized into certain departments. They’re either athletes or into business.”

Love will be representing City College and will join 25 other chosen students from other colleges and universities for the program, which immerses students in experiential learning centered on multi-disciplinary conservation strategies, biodiversity research, and careers in STEM.

“Tiffany is a very hardworking, dedicated individual,” said BSU president Saturne Tchabong. “Since I met her she has been really driven.”

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Love’s interest in biology and specifically medicine comes from her childhood.

“My father passed away from kidney failure,” Love said. “My mom has been a single mother for the last ten years. She has also been a registered nurse for 34 years now so I grew up around hospitals.”

Love grew up in the suburbs of Las Vegas. Active in her high school’s athletic program, she was a dancer and a baton twirler. She described herself as goofy, caring and unapologetically black.

Love said since a young age, she’s been drawn to the field of medicine.

“I was trying to figure out a way to help cure people from disease because my dad died from one,” Love said.

She said she was also deeply affected by her babysitter, who was in an abusive relationship and suffered burn wounds after her partner attacked her with boiling water.

“I want to perform plastic surgery in the future to try to make people comfortable in their own skin,” Love said.

She also talked about collaborating with a psychologist in the future to be able to understand the reasons behind her future clients’ decisions to change their bodies or faces.

The summer program was co-developed by UCSB, it’s community college partners, and the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute to immerse students in experimental, STEM-based learning.

The Institute is a part of the Smithsonian Institution, a group of museums and research centers managed by the U.S. government, and has been heavily involved in the fields of veterinary medicine, reproductive physiology and conservation biology since its founding in 1974.

“This will give me the chance to be working with with professionals,” Love said about the summer program. “Anyone can learn from a textbook. It’s more important to be hands on instead of learning from a book.”

Love said she has a lot of support from her mom and peers.

“I feel I got chosen and I’m in this because it is my time,” Love said. “I’m very involved in my community. I feel there is a whole lot I can give.”

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