I Heart My School: Spring 2017 Scholarship Winner

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ABODO started out as recent college grads who loved our alma maters but hated how grueling it was to find a great place to live. We built the tool we wished we’d had during our search, and then expanded it to hundreds of campuses across the country. We think it makes sense to pay it forward to the next generation of students — that’s why we started the I Heart My School Scholarship.

Today, we’re happy to announce our 2017 spring winner: Trina Abdulnour, from Wayne State University. Detroit might have a negative reputation, but that’s not been Abdulnour’s experience. She paints a picture of a hopeful, accepting, and diverse campus and surrounding area. 

Scroll down to see a few of Abdulour’s photos from around Detroit and Wayne State, and read about her take on the college experience.

If you love your school, learn more and apply for our upcoming fall scholarship.


I’m sure you’ve heard about Detroit before. It seems like people are often told of its negative past. What many have yet to see includes a world of diversity, growth, and an excitement for what’s to come. Students who attend Wayne State University, located in Midtown Detroit, get to experience these traits firsthand. That’s why so many of us love being Wayne State Warriors. How many university students can say that they earn their degree within mere miles of where the Detroit Lions, Tigers, and Red Wings play? How about that Canada is just a 15-minute drive away? This special experience is something I love to share since it truly is one of a kind.

Number one. Wayne State University has one of the most diverse student bodies in the state of Michigan. That’s kind of insane — in a good way. Our university is a beautiful melting pot of people from all over the world. Students of all different cultures, beliefs, and religious backgrounds have chosen to learn and grow right here in Detroit. I’ve personally met students who are from India, the Philippines, and Saudi Arabia. Meeting people who think and do things differently than us allows us to become more open minded individuals. It’s exciting to learn about our similarities and differences. It reminds us that we’re all human one way or another. There are many international clubs and organizations on our campus that appreciate all different kinds of cultures and ideas. We can’t help but feel appreciated and respected on our campus, no matter where we come from. Wayne State embraces each student’s individuality. By doing so, we learn to do the same and that paves a road of love and kindness for all different kinds of people.

Number two. We are one of only three research universities in the state of Michigan, alongside Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. Researching allows us to learn more about our fields of interest. Anyone who wishes to collect research data from students can easily do so since many students are willing to help out. What better way to test a hypothesis than to have thousands of potential research subjects within arm’s reach? Sometimes if you’re really lucky, your professor might even throw in some extra credit just for participating in a research study! It’s a win-win situation for all of us.

Number three. Wayne State is located right in the heart of Detroit. In other words, we are an urban university. Being able to study and explore in the city is absolutely fascinating. There are so many places to visit. The Detroit Institute of Arts and the Detroit Public Library are a short walking distance from our campus. If the arts aren’t your thing, there are lots of different places to dine. We’ve got Middle Eastern, Thai, Greek, Mexican, and all-American restaurants and cafes. Not into eating out? The Eastern Market is a short drive away where you can buy freshly grown fruits and vegetables and even recipe-perfected goodies. Many of the vendors there are Detroit born or raised, so it’s like giving right back to the community. While you’re there, why not check out the cool art murals made by artists from all over the United States. There really is something there for everyone. Yes, all you food-truck lovers, we’ve got plenty of those too. For all the sport enthusiasts, we have the famous Detroit Lions, Tigers, and Red Wings stadiums all within a short drive. The Fox and Fillmore Theaters offer musical performances and plays all year around. Simply being in the city of Detroit is an adventure in itself.

Number four. Our city of Detroit offers a multitude of work and volunteering opportunities. Being in the original automotive city makes for a huge advantage when it comes to finding internships and jobs. Whether you’re an engineering major or a business major, the automotive industry has great career opportunities for many different kinds of degrees. There are also some hospitals around the area which are perfect for our many talented medical students. Often, finding a job in your field of study is difficult, but being in the heart of Detroit opens many doors for us. This lets many of us stay in the area which in turn, contributes to Detroit’s growth not only economically but also as a community. In addition to finding jobs, there are many organizations students can volunteer for. For instance, several of Detroit’s public schools offer opportunities to help tutor young children with their reading skills. Whether volunteering helps the young or old, every helping hand plays an important role in bringing about great change. It truly is a rewarding feeling to be able to make a positive change in the community.

Number five. I think by now you’ve heard enough about how cool it is to be studying at Wayne State in Detroit. Well in a way, it’s also the other way around. We also get a rare chance to study about Detroit in Wayne State. The Irvin D. Reid Honors College offers its honors students classes which teach them about the rich history of Detroit. Learning about the past inspires us to think about the future. How many universities do you know of that have actual semester-long classes dedicated to teaching about the city it resides in? I know I had never heard of any before coming to Wayne State. Now I have a much better understanding of this amazing place I call home.

— Trina Abdulnour, Wayne State University