The Ohio State University at Lima

How will Ohio State Lima Direct your Path?

Alum and first-generation student David Braun's experience at Ohio State Lima has prepared him for his next step – law school – with a full academic scholarship.

Q: What challenges do you feel you were facing when you entered college as a first-generation student, and how did Ohio State Lima address these challenges?

A: When I first came to college, I lacked the knowledge and social capital my peers seemed to intuitively have. Within my first semester I feared I would be dismissed due to lack of funds. Despite this, the staff at Ohio State Lima worked with me. The faculty who I feared would sniff me out as a lost kid who didn't belong, gave me the help I needed and never made me feel foolish. I didn't know what a book on-hold at the library meant or how to navigate FAFSA. I was unsure how to address professors or work in groups, and I was downright timid through my whole freshman year. Nevertheless, everyone here cared about me and my success and as a result, this first-generation college student made his way through with his head held high.

Q: How did Ohio State Lima open doors and pathways that five years ago you would not have anticipated?

A: When I first embarked on my college journey, I was a criminology major with the intention of transitioning to Columbus after a year or two. I had no idea what Ohio State Lima had in store for me. In my first semester of my sophomore year, I began to get involved with the campus and it gave me more than I could ever imagine. I was connected to the community via internships with organizations making a difference every day and developed professional writing as a newspaper intern. As the president of Buckeye Scholars, I worked with fellow students to help them get involved in their campus and encourage their passions. I consulted daily with professors, and built a resume that I'm extremely proud of because it reflects what hard work and the support of so many can accomplish.

Q: What are your career goals?

A: I plan to become a lawyer with a particular focus on public interest and human rights. I will acquire my Juris Doctor degree while concurrently receiving my Master of Laws degree in international governance and rule of law. This path is in large part due to my time at Ohio State Lima. When I first entered college fresh from my U.S. Army Reserve training, I wasn't sure what I wanted to do. From my first day of class with Dr. Beth to graduation day, one thing really stuck out to me, my professors asked me "What do you want to do?" "What's your degree?" Why?" How?" I was taken aback that these established professors who had seen countless students come and go still cared so deeply about a student, even one who seemed as lost and confused as I. When they found out my career desires, they recommended internships, books, courses, approaches to papers, scholarly journals, and much more so that I really began to develop answers for all the questions they'd asked. Ohio State Lima helped me find a focus and a purpose.