Vy Tran

Aspiring Doctor from Vietnam

My name is Vy Tran, and I’m a person of many places. I am a first-generation college student, I grew up in a rural village in Vietnam. Then I came to Atlanta, Georgia, and finally came to Stanford University for college. I am currently pursuing my passion for community health and an aspiring doctor. 

"My community was super under-resourced, and that pushes me to represent when I’m here at Stanford. I want to come back to where I’m from and help people have opportunities. I feel that all those things come to my heart, and I think it makes me become a more beautiful person. The ugliness in life, the resentment, the things I don’t have: it's all about how you perceive them, and you can use that to your advantage."


"There are many kids in my situation - I have a mom working in a factory, growing up I could have not gone to school. A lot could have gone wrong. Sometimes, I wonder why do some people succeed. I think it comes down to values. If you have a foundation rooted in something—for some people it’s faith, for others it's family—if you have your values instilled strongly in you, it gives you purpose. Even if you don’t know what your big purpose is, you know one of them is to take care of your family, and that keeps you moving forward and strong. Values helps me. Every time I’m distracted—my mom just got laid off, etc—I ask, what are your values? In that I find my strengths. I find direction."


"I play imaginary games with myself - it gets better if you do. Let's say I’m running towards a post. It could be silly: if you make it to the post, your mom will have a good day. It’s just small things. I tell myself lies that I want to become true, and it’s a source of motivation for me to make those things happen. Vy: if you succeed in life, your parents will see you were a good thing to happen. Also, that they were good parents."


To hear Vy share more reflections, check out her video series HERE.