Birmingham, Michigan, United States
Cell and Molecular Biology
Why did you choose to attend Grand Valley?
I chose to attend Grand Valley primarily based on the cell and molecular biology program that they have here. I knew I wanted to major in the sciences and it seemed like a unique program that not a lot of students majored in. I wanted to do something different. The curriculum is based a lot around laboratory techniques, not just regurgitating lectures given to you. The courses prepare anybody thinking about going into medical research like myself, or even medical school.
What do you like best about Grand Valley?
The teachers are willing to help you if you ask for it. And the way the curriculum is set up within the Honors College is very interesting. They develop your education completely by having you take a variety of history and social courses. Also, the West Michigan location is good. There are opportunities to seek out scientific research here at Grand Valley if you want to.
How have you benefited from Grand Valley's liberal education foundation?
You get a choice to sign up for the classes that you find interesting. In Honors you can choose a sequence that you are interested in taking for a year or two. From what I've heard about general courses, the Honors courses are more engaging. They're set up to encourage class discussion. All of the courses are really interesting and the professors are very well informed.
How will Grand Valley help you meet your future goals?
I intend on attending grad school to get a Ph.D. in cancer biology. The way Grand Valley has prepared me goes back to the cell and molecular biology department and the way the curriculum is set up. A lot of the techniques I'm learning in class I will use the rest of my life. Also, the curriculum insists that we get involved in biomedical research. It is actually a part of the curriculum. It allows you to experience research before grad school to see if it's what you want to do. I have been fortunate to have a lot of experiences with research and that can be contributed to the department and the university as a whole. I will definitely be prepared for wherever I choose to go.
How has the Honors College enhanced your overall education?
The caliber of teachers that they have within the Honors College is impressive. They are some of the best in the university. They challenge the students above and beyond what is in the general curriculum. They expect you to be driven in the classes that you take. There are a lot of interesting classes driven by teachers who want to teach you. That, in the long run, definitely developed my overall education at Grand Valley.
How have you benefitted from living in Honors College housing?
The Honors housing provided a quiet, studious environment, which was a benefit for me when I lived there the first couple of years. It's a benefit to be surrounded by other students that are academically focused like myself. Also, having classes in the building is a benefit. Honors offers a lot of resources, such as a computer lab, multipurpose room with a piano, and a reading room. It's a perfect learning environment for anyone who chooses to live in it.
Why would you recommend the Honors College to others?
As an incoming freshman the Honors College is probably the best bet to make sure you don't get lost in the cracks as an undergrad by being able to live in an environment that is suitable for studying and for being able to meet people. The community is very close knit and the friendships I made the couple years I lived in Honors housing are irreplaceable. And the classes aren't that scary, they are definitely doable. It's the best place to start your college career.
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