| From Commonwealth
Mike Zales (SAR'08) of Spring Lake, New Jersey. Photo by Kalman Zabarsky
Name: Mike Zales
Major: Human Physiology
Hometown: Spring Lake, New Jersey
Bostonia: Why did you choose your major?
Mike: I applied to college, I was set on being premed. But about two years ago, I changed career paths. I went to Tanzania for just under a month, through the Catholic Center at BU. I worked in AIDS orphanages, built houses. It was an amazing experience. I fell in love with Africa. Now I'm applying to the School of Public Health.
What was it about the trip that made you switch your career plans?
I saw the devastation of poverty in the Third World. It changed me. I want to pursue a career in international health – global health-care policy and delivery. And I was inspired to go to Nicaragua, through the NGO International Service Learning. For fourteen days, we went to different villages and took public-health census surveys. Then we held clinics for about thirty patients a day.
Do you work?
I have an internship with the Boston Healing Landscape Project [a center for the study of cultural, religious, and medical pluralism at the School of Medicine]. And I'm helping to build a house in Arlington. I did a lot of construction work in high school.
Where do you live?
StuVi [the Student Village]. I have one roommate.
Do you cook?
Somewhat. We have this thing called "the Zales special." I think my girlfriend came up with the name. It's pasta with clams, shrimp, and squid.
What do you do for fun?
I'm in the BU Soccer Club. We play three times a week for two hours. It's the only outlet I have.