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Hi everyone! My name is Jillian Hersh and I am a biology major. This year, I will be a sophomore at UCF. In 2015, I graduated from Park Vista Community High School‐a high school in Lake Worth, Florida. My favorite class, thus far, has definitely been Biology 1. As an aspiring veterinarian, I find learning about all living things really interesting. However, I am way more interested in learning about animals than plants. So far, my favorite professor has actually been my biology teacher, Professor Pamela Thomas. She is the sweetest, most engaging teacher that I have ever had. Professor Thomas actually cared about each individual student even though she taught over 500 students at once. Aside from caring for her students, Professor Thomas was really passionate about the subject she was teaching. Instead of reading off of a PowerPoint slide, like many professors, Professor Thomas actually talks to her students and engages them in what they are learning about. I decided to get involved with the GEMS program because I wanted to meet girls with the same interests as me. When I first started at UCF, I didn't know anybody. After getting involved with the GEMS program, however, I was able to meet some of the best friends that I have ever had. For this year, I really hope that all of the new members of the GEMS program take advantage of the mentoring program. The mentoring program is a really unique feature of the GEMS program. It allows for new members to be paired with an older member and a group of about five to six girls with the same, or similar, major. Being a part of these smaller groups allows for new members to become close to a few individuals that they can feel comfortable around. On a different note, in my spare time, I enjoy hanging out with my friends, going to Disney and Universal, watching TV, and listening to music.