Jonathan Ho

four people standing together in formal wear while student holds an award
Jonathan Ho receiving the 2019 Chancellor's Civic Engagement Award from UC Davis Chancellor Gary S. May. (Courtesy of Jonathan Ho)

As a logistics officer in the Singapore Army, Jonathan Ho witnessed a level of poverty that inspired him to pursue a career in healthcare that would eventually lead him to UC Davis.

Ho, now a fourth year majoring in biochemistry and molecular biology, sought out UC Davis because of the caliber of the College of Biological Sciences, one of only three colleges in the United States dedicated to the study of biological sciences. While at UC Davis, Ho volunteered at the Knights Landing One Health Student Clinic where he witnessed how social determinates of health can impact a rural community.

“I saw that the problems people in community had related to hypertension, diabetes and other disease were things that are really dependent on lifestyle and diet. They are things that are very hard to treat with a one-time visit to a clinic,” he said. “I wanted to do something more to help.”

Ho worked with other students to secure more than $50,000 to build a community garden for the Knights Landing Community. The garden, which broke ground in 2019, promises to be a source of fresh produce for citizens and a positive activity for the youth of Knights Landing.

“With everything we’ve done, our goal has been not to impose something on the community, but rather to be a resource to help them get what they are looking for,” he said. “We are very sincere with our actions and really want to help improve the lives of other people.”

About UC Davis Public Scholarship and Engagement

Public Scholarship and Engagement (PSE) is fostering a culture of engagement at UC Davis that increases the university’s impact through mutually-beneficial relationships that have local, regional, statewide, and global reach. 

We envision UC Davis research, teaching and learning that serves society and makes a positive difference in the world.