University Honors ProgramUniversity of Cincinnati

University Honors Program

Zefrem Vesel

College of Allied Health Sciences, Health Sciences & International Human Rights certificate
Focus on Global Studies & Community Engagement

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As a native Northeastern Ohioan, Zefrem originally selected the University of Cincinnati for the world-renowned cooperative education program in Biomedical Engineering. Once he was on campus he figured out what he truly wanted to do with his life: dedicate himself to human rights issues and ethics via medicine. As Zef began taking courses and working on a certificate in International Human Rights, he realized he was not in the best major for his interests and future experiences, leading him  to change his primary field of study to Health Sciences.

With an established desire to learn by doing, one of Zef’s first experiences with University Honors was through the seminar, “Women, Population and Development.” In addition to classroom time, this course culminated a travel component to Ghana. Zef describes it as “one of the best experience of my life.” This course has also been a springboard for Zef, as he is scheduled to take an honors seminar this fall semester titled “Social Entrepreneurship: Sustainable and Profitable Solutions to Global Challenges.” Within the course, students establish cross-national and cross-discipline teams that will then develop a product or service that provides for a societal need and produces a social benefit while making a nominal profit at the same time. The seminar includes a trip to Montreal, Canada to meet with entrepreneurs and other professionals to learn firsthand about their experiences creating sustainable solutions.

Even when Zefrem is not traveling the globe he is working to better the world around him. Through his academic program Zef is now volunteering weekly at Tender Mercies in Cincinnati’s Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. In addition to his academic interests, he has also taken a leadership role in one of the newest organization on campus, GlobeMed. As an executive member Zef is working on programming and planning for the group’s upcoming trip to Thailand. Groups like this have provided Zef an opportunity to not only learn more about his interests and future professional goals, but also see his education and honors experiences in action. As Zef puts it, during his time in University Honors he “has been given a good idea of what is out there and learned to explore things he loves doing. I have been pushed to challenge myself and take advantage of opportunities when they are given to me.”

As you can see, Zef is putting his words into action with the help of University Honors. To learn more about his experience with GlobeMed at the University of Cincinnati World Day of Social Justice, click here!


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