Nordic skiing and science have always been my passions. Luckily, when it was time for me to go to college, I didn’t have to leave my favorite sport behind. At Clarkson, I’m learning and skiing.
In high school, I loved my chemistry and biology classes. I was fascinated by how the human body works at a molecular level; maybe being an athlete makes you think more about the physical processes that help you tackle sports.
My dad is a Clarkson alum (Robert Witkowski ’84), so I attended one of the University’s events for prospective students. While visiting, I fell in love. I had wonderful conversations with faculty and I could imagine being friends with the students I met. Everyone I spoke with was so enthusiastic – it seemed like a great, supportive environment and I loved the campus and the prime skiing location in the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains.
I was accepted into the Clarkson Honors Program, so when I arrived as a first-year student I had a built-in supportive community. I also joined organizations on campus, including the Phi Delta Epsilon International Medical Fraternity and Beta Beta Beta Biological Honors Society. And of course, I became a member of the women’s Nordic ski team, too.
As a biomolecular science major, I’ve had the opportunity to work closely with professors in both the biology and chemistry departments. My professors are very generous with their knowledge and always happy to share their experiences and wisdom.
My class and lab on anatomy and physiology gave me the chance to work with an actual cadaver. That’s something that isn’t offered to undergraduates at many other schools. It took some getting used to, but ultimately it was very cool, and I think the experience will put me ahead of the curve for medical school.
The hands-on research and lab experience have really helped me focus my postgraduation plans. I might take a gap year after getting my bachelor’s degree and either work in a hospital or become a research assistant, then get my MD/PhD in order to best serve the community around me.
In the meantime, I’ll ski whenever I can. Our team has been national champions for two years in a row, and we’ll be trying to keep the streak going in March in Lake Placid. It’s been an incredible experience traveling across the country and competing.
The education and experiences at Clarkson, the friendships I’ve made and memories I hold, have all shaped the person I am today. I see so many possibilities for life after graduation, and I know that thanks to Clarkson, I’m as prepared as I can be for what lies ahead.