Student Spotlight: Le’Darrieus Dunlap


Photo by: Elodi Breg

Le’Darrieus Dunlap is pursuing a career in healthcare so that he can continue helping others.

Le’Darrieus “LD” Dunlap, a senior biology major, said he has always wanted to be in a position that would allow him to positively impact someone’s life, and he can’t wait to graduate so he can do just that.

Born and raised in Clover, South Carolina, the 22-year-old FMU student will be the first in his family to graduate from college.

“Completing this next step in my life is huge for me,” Dunlap said. “Being able to provide for my family in the long run is a dream because they sacrificed a lot in order to give my siblings and I a better life.”

Dunlap initially decided to attend FMU simply because of its affordable tuition. However, all it took for him to fall in love with the school was one visit to the campus.

With the desire to help people in mind, LD chose his major carefully. He decided to major in biology and minor in chemistry so there was an opportunity for him to go to medical school or another graduate health program of some kind after college.

Before he continues his education in the classroom, Dunlap plans to join the Army Reserves as an officer. His goal is to then use his experience, along with his degree, to begin applying to medical schools, with the hope that the Army will cover a large portion of his tuition.

As of now, Dunlap would like to become a cardiovascular physician’s assistant, a pediatric physician’s assistant or a cardiovascular perfusionist.

“The thing that excites me the most about graduating is that I’ll have the opportunity to further myself professionally and personally,” Dunlap said. “I know that graduation will be hard, but I am looking forward to growing and learning new things.”

Dunlap has used every opportunity to grow as a student  at FMU. He currently works as a medical scribe in the McLeod Emergency Department, where he gets to see and experience all kinds of things. In addition to balancing both school and a job, Dunlap previously served as president of the Tau Sigma Chapter (TKE) and FMU’s Interfraternity Council (IFC). He has also taken on the role of president of the Intramural Sports Council in the past and served as a COVID-19 contact tracer.

TKE has been a huge part of Dunlap’s experience at FMU. He said that of all the things he has grown to love at FMU, his brothers through the fraternity are what he will miss the most after he graduates.

“One of the biggest challenges I had to face when I came to FMU was being three hours away from my family and not having that support system, but then I found TKE,” Dunlap said. “My brothers pushed me to be the best I could be, and in return, I pushed myself to be the best for them.”

With all of the happiness that comes with a college graduation, there is also a little sadness. Dunlap said one of his biggest concerns about graduating from FMU is leaving behind all of the people that have looked up to him and leaned on him over the past few years. Although he is confident they will be fine, he said knowing he won’t be able to provide them with that support anymore is a bittersweet feeling.

Overall, LD is more than satisfied with all the knowledge and experiences he has gained through FMU.

“I would not change a thing about my experience at FMU,” Dunlap said. “I have definitely overcome and been through a lot, but from those experiences, I have learned more than I could have ever asked for.”