Member Spotlight – Renee Acosta

Jamie Chapman
Jul 26, 2023

Born and raised in Northborough, Massachusetts, Renee Acosta currently resides in Charlotte, NC. She graduated with a bachelor's degree in disease and public health from Boston University in 2020. Earlier this year, she was initiated into Phi Kappa Phi at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and recently graduated from the University’s School of Pharmacy with a master's degree in regulatory affairs.

Renee enjoys her role at Takeda Pharmaceutical as a lead investigator, where she works to investigate and establish innovative corrective and preventative actions. In addition to working in the pharmaceutical industry, Renee operates a small candle business, Vetiver and Co, and runs Love Renee Hannah, a lifestyle blog that cultivates inspiring content. 

After her grandfather passed away from Alzheimer’s disease, Renee became passionate about the Alzheimer’s Association’s mission to find a cure. She participates in its annual Walk to End Alzheimer's as a team captain and donates a portion of Vetiver’s proceeds to the Association.  

In her free time, Renee enjoys gardening, reading, writing, skydiving, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.

Let’s get to know Renee! 

What does Phi Kappa Phi mean to you?
Community, achievement, acceptance. I enjoy being a part of a community of like-minded individuals where we can network, build relationships, learn, and grow. It's been so fun getting to know my peers from all over the country in the online community. 

What is the last book you read?
Such a Quiet Place by Megan Miranda. It's a slow burn, but I'd rate it a solid 4/5. My favorite books to read are mysteries/thrillers and historical fiction. Next on my list are The Sundown Motel by Simone St. James, The Magnolia Palace by Fiona Davis, and A History of Wild Places by Shea Ernshaw.  

What do you grow in your garden?
Lots of things! We bought our first house in 2022, so I've enjoyed overhauling the landscape and planting jalapeño plants, mint, basil, lavender, parsley, and flowers of all kinds. I'm hoping to expand it in the fall. 

What is the best gift you have been given?
The best gift I have ever received is a little music box from my husband for our fourth wedding anniversary. It plays “You Are My Sunshine”, a song we hum or sing to each other if the other is going through a hard time. I've received a lot of incredibly thoughtful gifts from family and friends, but that little music box is my favorite.  

What intrigues you most about disease and public health?
I am fascinated with infectious diseases and understanding how those diseases and conditions affect public health worldwide. I love critical thinking/problem solving, and I am very interested in how we can improve the health of populations through preventative measures such as health information, immunization programs, and food, water, and environmental safety. 

What do you enjoy most about skydiving?
The feelings and emotions associated with it. The adrenaline rush from diving out of a plane at 13,000 feet, the wind rushing at your face and through your hair, the feeling of free falling and the surge of serotonin. There's nothing quite like it in the world, and it's the most exciting thing I've ever done. I am hoping to get my certification soon to solo dive!

What is your favorite holiday?
Halloween is my favorite holiday, followed closely by Christmas and Thanksgiving. I love all things horror, and autumn is my favorite season. Halloween is the perfect mix of that autumn chill with a dash of spookiness. I love dressing up, curling up on the couch to watch horror movies, attending Halloween parties, bobbing for apples, and everything else that comes with it. 

Do you have any pets?
I have three: a corgi named Teddy, a Domestic Shorthair cat named Delilah and a flame-point Siamese cat named Milo. It's a zoo over here, but they get along really well. I love how different their personalities are! 

What motivates you to work hard?
Myself and my family. I hold myself to very high standards and have big goals and aspirations. The only way to achieve them is through good old-fashioned hard work! I also work hard for my family, because I want to give them the best future. I would love to be able to give back to my parents for all the sacrifices they've made for me throughout my life.  

What accomplishment are you most proud of?
I would have to say graduating with both my undergraduate and graduate programs while working a full-time job, part-time job, running a small business, and making time for friends and family. It's been the most challenging yet rewarding chapter of my life so far, and I'm excited to see what's next! 

To learn more about Renee and connect, visit her profile within our online member community here

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