Humans of Saint Martin's: Jaskaran Dhatt '23
As a first-generation college student, I’m able to help pave the way for my family.
- Jaskaran Dhatt '23
- A.S.S.M.U President
I’m the oldest son of a Punjabi-American household. My parents grew up in India and spent most of their lives there but immigrated to the United States in the late 90s. I grew up in a pretty traditional household, which meant that as the oldest son and grandson in my family, I was held to a higher standard. I was expected to do well, succeed, and be someone that everyone else could look up to. In a way, what I did mattered more or held more weight. At times, this was difficult because it was a lot of pressure to constantly hold myself up to that standard, but it also helped me push myself to do the best I could in every situation. When I started high school in 2014, I gained the courage to do more, and I started to take sports more seriously. I started cross country in my freshman year, so I worked, and as I improved, I started to gain more self-confidence. After a while, I became a leader on the team, and from there, I started to take on more leadership roles on campus. In my senior year of high school, I became the president of the Associated Student Body, and as a result of that, I was given the opportunity to attend the Mt. Rainier Leadership Camp, which is sponsored by the state. This was a big point in my life because it allowed me to step out of my comfort zone and gain more confidence in my abilities. I’m really thankful for that opportunity, as well as the opportunity to go back as a junior counselor for that same program. As a counselor, I was able to develop my ability in serving others as a leader.
Coming to Saint Martin’s University was another defining moment in my life because I’m a first-generation college student. As a first-generation college student, I’m able to help pave the way for my family. Here, I was given the opportunity to continue my athletic career, which has been really cool. I’ve encountered many ups and downs, but I think that’s important for growth and improvement. Last year, I made the decision to run for ASSMU president, and I was elected for the position. I’m very grateful for this opportunity. The role comes with a lot of work, specifically a lot of work spent on projects and community events, but I love what I do, so it doesn’t feel like work most of the time.
A lot of what I do to push myself can be traced back to my roots. I do my best not only to represent myself well but my family and Saint Martin’s student body as well. My message to other students, athletes, and other aspiring leaders is to not be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and say yes to different opportunities because you never know where they might lead you. There are a lot of amazing people and resources that you can count on for help, so I encourage everyone to take that step forward.
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- Main (Lacey)
- Saint Martin's-JBLM
- Type of Instruction
- In Person
- Bachelor of Arts