Thursday, April 15, 2021
Vishnu Soni '22, neuropsychology major at UNH Manchester

"In Our Own Voices" is a photo and story gallery celebrating diversity and the voices that make the UNH Manchester community a wonderful place to live, learn and grow. Their stories are our story—and we are proud to tell it. Vishnu Soni '22, a neuropsychology major, shares his story below.

***

“My grades in psychology gave me a sense of purpose, and I finally dreamt of doing something bigger than myself.”

I’d describe the last four years of my life as a love story about an average Joe and the textbook that changed his life. Before junior year in high school in India, mediocrity was my style: I had average grades, no talents, and a few friends. Things changed when I chose psychology as an elective. Like any love story, it started with infatuation. When I first opened my textbook, I felt the need to read more. Before long, I spent hours reading, driven by curiosity. I carried that textbook everywhere, and I read whenever I had a spare moment. My parents forced me to study other subjects, and I felt a sense of excitement studying psychology when they weren’t watching. My grades in psychology gave me a sense of purpose, and I finally dreamt of doing something bigger than myself. Unfortunately, I did not find a career in psychology in India to be as promising as I had hoped. Thus, I committed to college in the U.S., where I hoped to indulge in my studies and make a successful career from what I loved.

When my father passed away before my senior year final exams, then came the biggest test of my love for the discipline. Family members told me to skip the year, and college no longer seemed financially possible. But I couldn’t give up on psychology. I took the situation as an opportunity and brought home a perfect score. My mother was fortunate enough to land a job in New Hampshire, and that’s when I got admitted to UNH. Now, I’ve been doing research with my professor for over a year and am living the dream.

Photographer: 
David Vogt | Freelance Photographer
Producer: 
Kassidy Taylor | Marketing & Communications, UNH Manchester | kassidy.taylor@unh.edu