One of my favorite quotes is by Oprah Winfrey: “It doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from. The ability to triumph begins with you – always.” I am beyond excited to continue my journey as a Baldwin Scholar and grow within a group so diverse, from academics to ideals to backgrounds, and truly succeed together.

My name is Mashal Ali, and I was born in raised in San Antonio, Texas. Growing up in a joint family of ten people has made family the biggest factor in shaping who I am today, and the Pakistani culture I was raised in is one I have nothing but immense pride for. Education has always been a beacon of hope for my family, and I believe this is what got me where I am today at Duke.

I am planning to major in neuroscience and double minor in Arabic and chemistry. I love all things science and am planning to attend medical school after I graduate- let’s hope for the best!! I love the Arabic language and culture, and I hope to visit the Arab world at some point (when my premed schedule will let me). Currently, I am immersing myself in the world of research through the Wilbourn Infant Lab at Duke (the WILD!). I love working with children and look forward to continuing finding what I love at Duke. I am also the communications chair for Diya, the South Asian Organization, as well as am the secretary of Synapse and the director of marketing and publicity for Me Too Monologues.

On the rare instances when I’m not in Perkins, I love listening to music (I am always looking for new music!!!), hiking, hanging out with my friends, and writing poetry. I also am always talking to my older sister or watching The Office.

I am immensely thankful to be a Baldwin Scholar! In the past year I have gotten closer to so many amazing women and seen myself grow and strengthen. I truly believe Baldwin Scholars has the privilege to empower all women on Duke’s campus, and that we are all responsible for working towards this goal. I am almost impatient to get even closer to this phenomenal community and the amazing women in it!