Danielle Muriel

Danielle Muriel
  • UVA Class Year(s): Col ’21
  • Current City: Virginia Beach, VA
  • Current job: Hopefully I will be working as a medical assistant in Virginia Beach, VA, during my gap years after graduation!
  • What is your Bodo’s order (or, your favorite Charlottesville spot)? My favorite Charlottesville spots are OAAA, the Lawn, and places like Quirk Rooftop or Pippin Hill Winery that have amazing views and good vibes.

Tell us your UVA story. What did you do during your time on Grounds? What were your favorite memories?

I feel that UVA opened a lot of doors for me— I reached a new pinnacle every couple of months. I came in dominating my pre-med classes like biology, chemistry, and calculus. I then modeled for the first time on a runway in Fall 2018 with Fashion for a Cause. I was a research assistant under a Psychology Ph.D. candidate for a year where I helped run participants and archival research studies on attitudes toward certain races, locations, and migration statuses. During my time on Grounds, I found out I was passionate about helping students like me. I became a Peer Advisor through the Office of African American Affairs which allowed me to be a first point of contact and assistance to other Black students. I always made sure to plug my advisees into the best class schedule and social events on Grounds. I went on to apply and become an Echols Scholar and Ridley Scholar which provided the academic, social, and financial support that allowed me to keep the same momentum for the next 2 years.

One of my absolute favorite memories of UVA was becoming a member of the Kappa Rho Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. My New Member Presentation was the first time the University saw me dance and shout passionately about my own endeavors. I gained 17 line sisters that I still look to for support every single day. I loved studying abroad in both the Dominican Republic and Valencia, Spain where I studied public health and medical Spanish to help me become a better future doctor. I was able to live in those countries amongst its citizens and really understand how public health changes with geographical location.

In general, some of my favorite student activities at UVA include Young Alumni Reunions, Black Alumni Weekend, NPHC Probates, Blackout by BSA, and The Source by BSA, these events make me feel at home by allowing a space to showcase and enjoy our African American culture. I also really enjoy events on the Lawn whether that be visiting friends or having a massive event like Lighting of the Lawn!

What’s next for you?

I really want to become a medical assistant while I study for the MCAT and apply for medical school.

What makes you say Wahoowa?

Seeing alumni go on to do great things makes me say Wahoowa. It’s so inspiring to see others like you do well and it opens your eyes to what is possible. It also makes me appreciate UVA for opening those type of doors for me.

UVA sporting events make me scream Wahoowa. I love attending football an basketball games. The most exciting night was when UVA won the 2019 National Championship. The last minute of the game was nerve wrecking, but when we won we all ran out to the streets at the same time for celebration and to scream Wahoowa together.

What’s the biggest way in which you hope alumni can impact UVA?

The biggest way I hope alumni impact UVA is to remind us of how much has changed. I think the most impactful conversations with alumni have included their personal stories of UVA in the 1970s and 80s when life on Grounds was much different for African Americans. It is only until I learned my history did I really understand where UVA traditions came from and why they are important. It also motivates me to keep uplifting the younger generation and encouraging them to come to UVA.

I also think alumni can impact UVA by keeping doors open for UVA graduates. The most exciting opportunities have not come from job searching but by reaching out to alumni who are able to plug me into the best opportunities and see a path forward.

Pick a pillar that best captures your life today:


Why does that pillar speak to you?

The pillar that speaks to me and captures my life today is “serve.” Going to a prestigious University and graduating is nice but what’s really impressive is impacting the world around us. The times where I feel most fulfilled is when I can say that some experience of others is better because I spoke up, advocated for reform, invested money into programs, etc. This is also why I really enjoy being part of a public service sorority whose mission is to serve the Black community.