Payton Ford’s grandparents seem to have had a big influence on him.
The Linganore High School graduate plans to attend UMBC in the fall and his course of studies are all influenced by his grandparents.
Ford, who was a player on the Linganore High varsity soccer team, plans to pursue a medical career while also minoring in Spanish. He says his Spanish minor is in recognition of his grandmother and the rest of his family who speak Spanish.
“My grandmother always wanted me to pursue speaking Spanish ... so I wanted to follow in the steps of our family and continue learning it,” Ford said.
His interest in medicine came about after seeing his grandfather in the hospital and how the medical field has responded to COVID19.
“It really inspired me to get involved with medicine...[the pandemic] made it clear that I really want to focus on the field, and it’s been shocking,” he said.
After participating in the Science, Service, Medicine and Mentoring (S2M2) program one summer, which is hosted by Uniformed Services University in Bethesda, Ford said he was able to see first-hand doctors practicing on patients.
Because of this experience, Ford said he is especially interested in focusing on anesthesiology or radiology.
The last few months, not being in school have been upsetting, Ford said, but he also appreciated the time it gave him to spend with loved ones.
“It’s been pretty rough but I’m glad I’ve been able to hang out with my family at home. I wouldn’t have had that chance if I was at school,” he said.
Ford added that he is going to miss Linganore High, not only because of the friendships he’s formed but because of the teachers.
“It really was a great environment, the teachers made it awesome,” Ford said. “They made me want to learn and pursue and my goals.”