The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Nursing Major Student Profile: Philip Pham

Aug 8, 2019
Scuba Diving in the Phuket Islands, Thailand

Philip Pham, Nursing Major '20, from North Andover, Massachusetts, was one of two winners in the UMass Amherst 2019 #YASUMass photo contest in which students submitted photos from their summer vacation adventures. See Philip's incredible photos from his trip to Thailand here.

Philip described his trip to Thailand and his inspirational philosophy of living in the "now":

"I will be graduating this upcoming May and can’t wait to start my nursing career off!  Realizing that this may be my last summer before I become a full-fledged RN, I decided to go on a once in a lifetime trip to Thailand! I wanted to go somewhere with plenty of water, warm weather, great food, and all at an affordable price. A night at a hostel in Thailand can cost as little as $7 and a local Thai dish can cost as little as $1! This was my first backpacking experience, so we had to find smart ways to save money here and there. But every day felt like an adventure! My friend and I would be taking a Thai Cuisine course one day, then diving with sharks the next. Another fun activity was meeting other people from various parts of the world. We made friends from all parts of the world, such as Italy, India, and Australia! 

As I had all this time for myself, away from work and other commitments, I had the opportunity to take in the moment. To live in the “now”. Sometimes we forget to breathe and remember how life is more than just finding a job and passing your classes. Let’s not forget to have fun. Life is a journey, and I believe it’s better to start your journey now, when your knees aren’t hurting!

When asked about his decision to become a nurse, Philip said, 

"I have wanted to be a nurse since my junior year of high school because of my wonderful experiences with volunteering at my local soup kitchen as a cook and volunteering with running concerts in my local schools. The ability to provide compassionate care and potentially be there at one person’s lowest point in life is a unique experience that I find extremely rewarding. So I thought, why not find a career that involves helping others!?"

Congratulations and best of luck to Philip as he enters his final year as a nursing major!