What would be your dream job and how did EMS put you closer to this goal?
My dream job would be working for a governmental agency or nonprofit focused on improving the way we manage natural resources and/or public lands.
What made you choose your major?
I applied and arrived at Penn State with different majors than the one I am finishing up now. I knew I wanted to study science and in some way that would improve the human relationship with nature, but I couldn’t find the right fit for me until I had an advising meeting with one of the RFSC academic advisers, Stacy Davidson. She recommended looking into Geosciences and talking to the department advisers. I went for it and felt right at home while taking GEOSC 001, knowing that this was exactly what I wanted to pursue.
What student organizations and activities are you involved in?
Penn State Outing Club, Association for Women Geoscientists
What is the best class you’ve taken at Penn State and why?
GEOSC 204 – Geobiology with Dr. Wilf. Even though I don’t find myself pursuing geobiology or paleontology-related topics in my personal research endeavors, I absolutely loved the class. It was exciting to learn about the interactions among life and the Earth throughout time and Dr. Wilf made it so exciting to come to class each week. I didn’t even have the chance to go on the field trip to Denver, CO because of the pandemic, but it was still be my favorite class — that’s how awesome it was!
What is the one Penn State activity that everyone should participate in, and why?
I think every Penn Stater should join the Outing Club — it’s the best way to make lifelong friends and explore the beautiful forests that are so close to campus!
Why did you decide to attend Penn State?
I actually come from a family of Penn Staters and thought I would want to be different and go somewhere else — I am so grateful every day that I ended up here! The College of Earth and Mineral Sciences truly feels like home and I would not have made all the amazing friends or had so many amazing opportunities without being a student here.
What’s the best part about being an EMS student?
The best part about being an EMS student is the support. I love and appreciate hanging out in the RFSC, meeting with advisers whenever I need to, connecting with people through EMS clubs, and taking advantage of the tutoring resources the college provides. EMS has built support systems that provide for academic, professional, and social needs!
What is one piece of advice you would give to prospective students?
My advice is get involved! There are biweekly student council meetings, various departmental clubs, and thousands of University-wide clubs, undergraduate research positions, and even opportunities to work or volunteer for EMS. By being involved and putting myself out there, I have made lifelong friends, traveled to Europe for research, and even received academic scholarships.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned in college so far?
The most important lesson I’ve learned in college so far has been to be an advocate for yourself. There are numerous people and resources here to help you, but you have to be the one to let them know what you need. Sitting quietly in the back will not help you get as far as actively participating and seeking opportunities.
What opportunities has Penn State provided for you so far?
Being at Penn State, and specifically an EMS student, had allowed me to be involved in faculty research, which ended up taking me to the Western Alps for field work, Greece for a workshop, and San Francisco to present my research and network. No matter what you’re interested in, Penn State has an avenue for you to pursue it in the best way possible.