By Haley Potter
A founding member of the Student Philanthropy Board, Matthew Westling is dedicated to his future in pharmaceuticals and philanthropy.
Working toward a dual degree in pharmacy and public administration, Westling is constantly busy with his studies, volunteering and other activities, including serving as the president of the Student National Pharmaceutical Association, an active member of Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity Inc., a clinician in the Student College of Clinical Pharmacy and a pharmacy intern at the VA Medical Center.
After graduation, he hopes to develop policy solutions that close gaps in health disparities in underserved populations.
"I am most passionate about helping others," Westling said. "Although it sounds cliche for someone going into medicine, I am passionate about helping people in every aspect of life, not just healthcare. However, healthcare has many inequities that are preventable and unjust that need to be solved, and I hope to be part of those solutions."
Outside of healthcare, Westling has a passion for human and civil rights. Through his previous role as the leadership and education development chair for MLK Jr. Wildcats for Service in the Center for Community Outreach, he was able to learn about Lexington and its history with civil rights. Further connecting with MLK's legacy, he worked with students to make change in our community.
"I have always believed in helping those in need and supporting those who fight for a good cause," Westling said. "Philanthropy is a term that encompasses every effort to help others, whether it is by volunteering your time, donating items or writing a check."
In an ideal world, Westling would have liked to meet Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. or Eleanor Roosevelt to discuss what human rights meant to them and how people could be united today.