Graduate Student Spotlight | Elaheh Eghbal

Elaheh Eghbal

"The Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior program seemed like a great fit and an excellent way to create a master’s degree that would lead me where I want to go."

Elaheh Eghbal, Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior

Program

  • Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior (M.A.)

Department

  • Psychology & Counseling

Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior graduate student, Elaheh Eghbal, is also a graduate assistant for Hood's Commuter Council.

Please provide a brief bio including your educational and career background.

I graduated from Hood College in 2013 with an undergraduate degree in Middle Eastern Studies and a minor in Global Studies. At the time, I had every intention of going into international development but life had other plans!

After graduation, I accepted a year-long position at Hood College as the AmerCorps*VISTA Coordinator in the Center for Career Development & Experiential Education. During this time, I connected Hood students with volunteer opportunities at the Frederick Community Action Agency and led campus events focusing on education around poverty and homelessness.

I also supported a lot of the marketing efforts for the Hood Career Center which led me down a marketing career path for the past 6 years.

Why did you choose Hood College and the Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior graduate program?

I had been looking at graduate programs on and off for a few years. Last year, I finally felt ready to return to school.

At the time, I was living in Bethesda, MD. I moved to Baltimore and was looking at programs at schools in the Baltimore area but none of them felt right. When I knew I was going to return to Frederick, I looked at the graduate degree programs offered at Hood. The Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior program seemed like a great fit and an excellent way to create a master’s degree that would lead me where I want to go.

I was particularly drawn to the breadth of topics as well as the ability to do a thesis on a topic of my choosing.

Has Hood College connected you with any professional opportunities in the area?

Most of my professional opportunities have come from the relationships I built as an undergrad student at Hood College.

Those relationships led me to the AmeriCorps*VISTA position which, in turn, led me to the marketing team at a tech company in Northern Virginia. That position then led me to a tech startup in Brunswick and brought me back to Frederick, MD and Hood College for graduate school. You never know where a 'hello' can lead you!

 What do you enjoy most about being at Hood College?

I enjoy that it’s both familiar and new.

It’s familiar in the sense that I know where to go for resources and that I can expect intimate classes where I can build relationships with the professors. It’s new in the sense that a lot has changed since I was on campus as an undergraduate student and I have changed as well.

You're the graduate assistant for the Hood Commuter Council. Tell us more about that.

I was quite excited to have been asked to be a graduate assistant and advise the Commuter Council, the voice for undergraduate commuter students.

As an undergraduate student, I was involved at Hood in a myriad of ways including student organizations, residence life, and student government. Commuter life was one area I wasn’t involved with.

It has been really rewarding to work with undergraduate commuter students to increase their engagement and connection with their Hood community. I have also enjoyed the opportunity to suggest ways for the council to work with other offices on campus, and leverage all that the Hood community has to offer.

What are some of your favorite places in Frederick to relax and unwind?

The benches at Culler Lake in Baker Park are one of my favorite outdoor spots in Downtown Frederick.

Cafe Nola, Olde Mother Brewing, and the upstairs at Hootch and Banter are some favorite indoor spots.

Inspired by Elaheh's story to #GOFURTHER in your education and career? Check out Hood's graduate programs including the M.A. in Human Behavior by clicking here.