Sara’s Story

Nursing grad earns prestigious accolades and awards

Jackson Runkle (Class of 2016) with files from UBC Public Affairs

Sara’s Story
CategoryAlumni
NameSara Eftekhar
FromIran and British Columbia
ProgramNursing
ActivitiesQueen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and the YWCA Young Woman of Distinction Award

 

Sara Eftekhar is a UBC Nursing alumna who is widely recognized as a volunteer and activist. A recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and the Young Woman of Distinction at the YWCA’s 30th annual Women of Distinction Awards, Sara has volunteered in nine countries around the world, worked on a health project in an Aboriginal community, and represented Canada at the United Nations University and international youth conferences. Sara was awarded a prestigious fellowship from Tony Blair and worked on Parliament Hill in Ottawa as the only youth advocating for global health. Recently, she was in Lebanon consulting the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations about youth programs. She volunteers in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside — one of Canada’s poorest neighbourhoods — in addition to being the B.C Ambassador for the Canadian Council for Refugees and the Executive Director and co-founder of the Civic Association of Iranian Canadians.

So what made Sara choose nursing? She knew since she was young that she wanted to help people so she enrolled in Sciences at UBC. After first year, she traveled to Ecuador to build houses — an experience in which she realized her potential to help people and compelled her to pursue nursing to develop those skills. Sara was deeply impacted by her experiences with families and patients in many health care settings and says that experiences like witnessing a birth or mourning a death delivers a lesson that she wouldn’t have been able to learn in the classroom.

“Although UBC is a place of mind, I encourage students to also make it a place of heart, by pursuing their passions no matter how hard it might be!”

She says that the deepest learning comes from volunteering on campus and in the community — not the classroom. Her advice to prospective students is to be openminded about courses and not to limit yourself: UBC has many amazing courses to offer — not just the ones in your program.

 

In the future, Sara plans to pursue a master’s degree in public health or public policy but in the meantime she has been offered two positions, one in Vancouver and the other in Ottawa. Both positions would involve her developing better health policies for children, youth, and families. After that, Sara will pursue her dream of working with an international organization focusing on child and maternal health.

 

Latest Stories

Previous
Lily Takeuchi, UBC medical laboratory science

The diversity of a science degree

How one program fuses research, multiple interests, and career prep.
alumni

The diversity of a science degree

Find out how Medical Laboratory Science made this alum "adaptable for a variety of careers."
Elliot Bellis, Urban Forestry

The urban side of forestry

The student life and career prospects of a UBC forestry student.
student

The urban side of forestry

Urban Forestry student Elliot Bellis busts the stereotypes as he shares what his program is really like, and where his degree can take him.
Sara Amadi, UBC alumni

The global graduate

How a Land and Food Systems alum is wielding her degree around the world.
alumni

The global graduate

Find out how a UBC degree propelled this Bachelor of Science alumna on global adventures and a quest to join the fight against climate change.
Katherine Tourigny, UBC Psychology, UBC Track and Field

Carving a path to UBC Medicine

How research and campus involvement round out your degree.
alumni

Carving a path to UBC Medicine

Find out how this UBC Science undergrad reached her goal of entering Medicine – and travelled to Peru and Antarctica along the way.
peter higgins, purdys, ubc

Becoming a Chocolate Scientist

How a UBC degree was the pathway to Purdy's.
alumni

Becoming a Chocolate Scientist

Discovering his niche within the Faculty of Land and Food Systems led this alum to an exciting career with Purdy's Chocolates.
angela sunario, indonesia, ubc

Finding your university path

How societies, co-ops, and scholarships enrich your degree.
student

Finding your university path

"I promised myself to maximize the different opportunities available at UBC so I can pave my own road."
emmy chahal, ubc

UBC experiences: Travel and research

From New Zealand to Spain to the local community.
student

UBC experiences: Travel and research

"Initially I was planning to major in International Relations, but after a trip to New Zealand with Go Global, I switched to Cultural Studies."
joses akampurira, ubc engineering, ubc okanagan

Life in the School of Engineering

Transitioning to UBC and finding a community on the Okanagan campus.
student

Life in the School of Engineering

"I am proud to belong to UBC – the institution and the community. UBC is like family." – Joses Akampurira, 3rd year, Civil Engineering
next