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Tina Luu


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Hi! My name is Tina Luu and I am a responsible, caring, hard-working, first-generation college freshman. I am able to fluently speak Chinese and Vietnamese, making English my third language. In my free time, I love to volunteer, hike, and photograph the world around me. As a first-generation Asian-American and college student, I have witnessed the struggles of learning a new language and growing up in a low-income family. I have also faced the obstacles of experiencing both sexual and racial prejudice. Because of this, I deeply understand the pressure of higher education set by traditional Asian cultures, the issues immigrants face when starting a new life, along with the need for diversity- specifically in STEM-related fields. I am passionate in becoming a biomedical engineer because I want to become a role model for young females looking to go into a STEM-related field. In doing so, I hope to decrease the gender-gap and better represent females in male-dominated jobs. I also hope to be able to develop better, easy-to-use, and biocompatible medical devices to assist in monitoring and repairing health conditions and injuries such as blood pressure, heart rate, and torn ligaments. On top of my career related dreams, I am also committed to properly showcasing the product of my parent's efforts in immigrating for a better life without the independent financial burden of college tuition. My long time goals are to retire my parents early, provide for my family, and work at Medtronic.


University of California-Irvine

Bachelor's degree program
2020 - 2024
  • Majors:
    • Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering

Theodore Roosevelt High School

High School
2016 - 2020


  • Desired degree level:

    Doctoral degree program (PhD, MD, JD, etc.)

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering
  • Planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:


    • Dream career goals:

      Develop more affordable, reliable, and biocompatible devices and break the gender gap in the field of STEM

    • Ambassador

      Pura Vida Bracelets
      2018 – Present6 years
    • Contest participant: first place overall winner

      Stevenson Middle and Roosevelt High School Engineering Fair
      2020 – 2020
    • Student

      Kumon Educational Japan Co. Ltd
      2008 – 201911 years
    • Assistant of Family Business

      New Worlds Fashion
      2013 – Present11 years


    • Engineering, General

      University of California, Irvine — Team member/Student; Developed an autonomous rover with color recognition and distance sensing abilities, soldered wires to circuit board
      2020 – 2021
    • Engineering, General

      University of California, Irvine — Team member/Student;Developed autonomous rover with color recognition, claw, and distance sensing abilities.
      2021 – Present
    • Engineering, General

      University of California, Irvine — Team member/Student; Developed a remote controlled rover with assigned project constraints, used engineering program: Solidworks, fabricated stylized chassis, worked with team to make design choices on wheels, steering mechanism, and gear sizes
      2020 – 2021


    • Scholastic Art and Writing Awards

      2020 – 2020
    • Roosevelt High School Music Department

      Selected to play at Carnegie Hall, 2019 New York Wind Band Festival
      2016 – 2020
    • Roosevelt High School Marching Band and Color Guard

      Performance Art
      2016 Bushido: The Way of the Warrior, 2018 Phantom of the Opera, 2019 Miss Saigon
      2016 – 2020

    Public services

    • Advocacy

      Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica (Spanish Honor Society) — Vice President; Organized initiation ceremony and fundraisers, arranged club meetings
      2020 – Present
    • Volunteering

      Key club — Club member; Volunteered at community and school charity events (navigation, photographer, set-up and clean up, sign waving, and maintenance), senior citizen dances, and Christmas parades. Collected and donated sanitary products to homeless shelter.
      2016 – 2019
    • Volunteering

      Leo club — Club member; Volunteered at community and school charity events (navigation, photographer, set-up and clean up, sign waving, and maintenance), craft fairs, and Christmas parades.
      2017 – 2020
    • Volunteering

      YMCA — Tutor; Managed homework rooms, filed papers, helped students with homework.
      2016 – 2017

    Future Interests




    Pettable Pet Lovers Annual Scholarship
    The image shown is a photo of my pet rabbit, Charlie Brown. He is wearing his brand new hoodie to hide his bed head because this was captured early in the morning on Thanksgiving day, while my family and I were doing some gardening. During this time, we usually let him frolic in the patches of grass while we gather vegetables for dinner. Sometimes we find his bite marks because our garden is his practically his buffet. We also feed him small amounts of his favorite treat to keep him out of our way while we work. My Instagram: ily_tinaaa
    First Generation College Student Scholarship
    Growing up in a traditional Asian household, I found it hard to stray away from academics to explore any other interests. Since I would be a first-generation college student, I found myself as the “role-model child,” and was expected to follow my parents’ traditional rules and beliefs. I was constantly told that I should focus on my studies and become a doctor or avoid hanging out with friends because it was too distracting. Despite my friends being the well-rounded and hard-working people my parents compared me to, nothing could convince them that my friends were good influences on me. Because of this, I struggled to balance my social life, understand who I was as an individual, and recognize what my dreams and aspirations were. This was a great challenge to me because it felt like my identity was split between home, where I was told I had to become a doctor, and school, where I was told it was up to me to decide. Seeing my peers chase their dreams with their parents’ support was even more heartbreaking for me. There was nothing more I wanted than my parents’ approval. I found it very difficult to be involved in any extracurriculars or classes that weren’t the highest level because my parents did not deem them as “good enough.” It was also difficult to take classes that would help me in my future career because I couldn’t figure out what career to pursue at the time. All I knew was that my choices were not what my parents wanted. How was I to find a balance between my parents’ wishes and my aspirations, especially when I was never given the opportunity to discover my true passions? After realizing that my potential was hindered by what my parents wanted for me, I began to take matters into my own hands. I tested my boundaries, embracing creative classes and activities like art, music, and color guard, in hopes to be the best at what I wanted for me. This allowed me to reflect on what I really enjoyed doing. My parents constantly found me painting, photographing, and even performing with our band in places like Carnegie Hall. I began incorporating my art into practical objects that I believed could make our lives easier. Through this, I discovered my passion for innovation and love for engineering. Specifically, I was drawn to the basics of mechanics and how they can be applied to enhance human activity. During my senior year of high school, I nervously applied to my dream schools as an engineering major without the approval of my parents. I also decided to participate in my high school’s first engineering fair. Many say that if you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. Nothing excited me more than being given the opportunity to design my own products and bring them to life. I spent weeks working on my ideas and presentations, showing my parents my progress along the way. I smiled from ear to ear every time, hoping to show them that I was serious about this career choice. Still they responded, “I hope you wrote good essays to get into good schools Tina. A doctor makes a lot of money.” “So does an engineer,” I thought. I was angered with their beliefs driven by monetary success. I wanted a much more authentic life for myself. Regardless, I continued to work hard on my project. As the judging day drew nearer, I worried about what the judges would think of my entry. I expected my first fair to be anticlimactic. Instead, I quickly received emails from the judges about how much potential my product had. The same week, I found out that I had won first place overall. I excitedly ran to my parents to tell them the news and that the award was scheduled to be picked up the following day. “When did you do all this?” they asked. I could tell they were shocked and confused by my interest in engineering. I smiled, shrugged it off, and said, “I’ve been experimenting, I guess,.” While I currently have no plans of ever being the doctor my parents dreamed of, my experience has taught me the importance of not resigning myself to mediocrity and that the true definition of success isn’t defined by how much money you make. Instead, doing what you love allows you to be motivated to work even harder and create your own definition of success.
    "Fight for Equality" Women in STEM Scholarship
    WiseGeek Lifelong Learners No-Essay Grant
    1000 Bold Points No-Essay Scholarship
    400 Bold Points No-Essay Scholarship
    Share Your Dream Job No-Essay Scholarship
    500 Bold Points No-Essay Scholarship
    Newsette No-Essay Leadership Scholarship for Women
    "Be Bold" No-Essay Scholarship
    WayUp Dream Job No-Essay Scholarship
    Hustle Tech & Business News No-Essay Scholarship
    Penny Hoarder Smart Money No-Essay Scholarship