A Conversation with Aminata Dem ’25, Army Reserve/ROTC
Major: Psychology, forensic track
Branch of Service/Rank: Army Reserve, private, second class. ROTC student on track to graduate as a non-commissioned officer, second lieutenant.
Why did you choose to serve in the Army?
I knew it would challenge me physically and mentally. I want to be part of something bigger than myself that would break me out of my comfort zone. It’s also a good way to break into leadership roles.
You’re a resident advisor and member of the Black Student Union. Why is getting involved on campus important to you?
It’s a great way to build community and relationships with people around you, and it’s important to make sure everyone feels included.
What does it mean to you to be a first-generation college student?
It means a lot. My little sister now wants to follow in my footsteps and is looking into the Air Force.
What are your future goals, and how will your degree help you achieve those goals?
My goal is to go to graduate school and earn a master’s in forensic psychology and also be able to contract as a 73B—a clinical psychologist for the Army Reserve—by then. I’ll be able to provide help to diagnose and treat a variety of mental disorders to soldiers, veterans, and their families. I always found psychology interesting, and I have friends who knew people and family members who committed suicide, so it is important and needs to be talked about more.
How has our Office of Veterans and Military Services helped you?
Wendy Badman is truly amazing and exceptional at her job. The Office of Veterans and Military Services itself does a wonderful job of making sure it’s a safe place on campus for myself, others who serve, others who have served, and others who plan on serving in the near future.
Is there anything you wish civilians understood about military service?
They are the backbone of the Army, and they do a good job of making military servicemen and women feel appreciated, but something that could be acknowledged or talked about more is mental health.
This November, DeSales is highlighting members of our campus community who have served or are currently serving in the armed forces. We appreciate all that you do.
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