Santa Clara University

Nicky Nienow Birch

Public Health Science and Political Science Major

In her four years as a Santa Clara Bronco, the world has become Nicky Nienow Birch's learning space.

"The best part about a Santa Clara education is the feeling of the classroom walls being pushed away, revealing opportunities to learn beyond our beautiful campus," she said. "I am so grateful, not only for these experiences, but also because I know they wouldn't have been possible without generous scholarship support from the University."

As a freshman, Nicky was drawn to a sense of community on campus and the Jesuit philosophy of using education to make a difference in the world. Giving campus tours as a Student Ambassador deepened her connection to Santa Clara and allowed her to share her Bronco pride with prospective students and their families. Now, in her senior year, she appreciates attending a school that encourages and celebrates learning through experience in new communities.

Nicky has traveled to Punjab, India through the Global Social Benefit Fellowship and participated in an immersion trip to the Tenderloin District of San Francisco, serving meals and witnessing the poverty that exists closer to home.

"These experiences caused me to see the world through different eyes and inspired me to find solutions to the world"s pressing problems," Nicky said. "It has taught me what it means to be a leader."