Hello! My name is Mariam Gulamhusein, and I’m excited and grateful to be a Baldwin Scholar at Duke!
I was born in the UK, but I spent the last eight years living in Dubai before coming to Duke. My parents were born in Tanzania, and my family also hails from India, Oman, Yemen, and Zanzibar. Growing up in this multicultural background always felt natural to me; at home, my parents’ conversations drifted through different languages, and listening to my grandparents’ stories of life on different continents remains fascinating. These experiences have allowed me to appreciate the beauty of cultural diversity, and I’ve learned to connect with people from all walks of life.
At home, I grew up surrounded by my three loving sisters and my two parents. Some of my fondest memories were afternoon car rides driving to Starbucks with my mum and sisters where we would chat about our days and sing along to our favorite songs. My family is my biggest support system, encouraging me to dream big and take advantage of the many opportunities I’ve been fortunate enough to receive.
In high school, I ran competitively in both national and regional competitions in the Middle East; I loved the discipline of training toward a goal and the consistency and routine that it provided. My teammates became some of my closest friends, and my coaches became my greatest mentors as they guided me through the many struggles and anxieties that riddled these years of competitive running. Aside from running, I loved immersing myself in STEM and service opportunities at school, doing everything from conducting research projects, writing for the science journal, and organizing weekly short story writing classes for elementary students. These activities allowed me to connect with so many community members, and over time, my school became my second home.
At Duke, I’m not completely sure what I want to study yet; I’ve loved almost every class I’ve ever taken, so I’m eager to continue exploring the breadth of courses that Duke has to offer. Since the start of the semester, I’ve also become involved with DSG as a Senator of Services and Sustainability and FEMMES+ Connect. I’m excited to deepen my connections at Duke, finding a new sense of home on this campus and a new group of sisters through Baldwin!