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Major in Biochemistry
What's your major? Did you come to Knox knowing you wanted to do that?
Biochemistry. I knew I wanted to be in science but wasn’t sure which major category.
What opportunities have you had at Knox?
I had a research opportunity with the new collaborative research program. I worked in the Solutions of Nature project: a group of students collaborating with faculty to find natural solutions to issues on the Knox Farm, or natural effects on crops/plants. Each of us chose our own projects of focus while we were collaborating on ideas with each other, discussing our research, and getting assistance/support/recommendations from each other and our faculty.
I chose to focus on a method of pest control without using pesticides or harmful products on the plants. I looked to see if placing decoy models of the white cabbage butterfly would prevent the butterfly from laying its eggs on the kale plants. When the eggs are laid, they will hatch into small, green worms. These will eat up the leafy portions of the kale, leaving nothing but the stem and ruining the crop. But if the decoys prevented the oviposition (laying of eggs), then this could benefit the Knox Farm in the future.
This gave me my first introduction to research and the scientific method. Being a STEM major (biochemistry), we always talked about the scientific method and how to conduct research or experiments. This was the first time I got to design my own research topic and experiment to conduct. It was a fun experience to be able to tie in the coursework I had been learning with my first research opportunity.
This will help me to better conduct my senior research here at Knox that I am in the process of thinking about for winter/spring term. I also plan to go to chiropractic college after this, so although my specific research topic was not directly health- or chiropractic-related, it did give me experience in research.
What did you do as part of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee?
I would do a lot of initiating and trying to get fans at events, all the home athletic events. We’d have raffles, games, and before COVID, sometimes we’d cook food or have lemonade. We also did events trying to get the campus involved with athletics. We had the Prairie Fire Fest that was a little carnival. We’d do a bonfire. We also did a lot of work with the Special Olympics every year, and we'd do the canned food drive every year.
How has softball impacted your Knox experience?
When I was first looking for a college, at some colleges, I was putting on an application yes [to participating in] sports, and at some, I was putting no, because I was looking at the school first. I came to Knox and visited, and met the [people in the] softball program and the coach, and I just felt at home. Even after that, I still always felt that way about the softball program. It’s always been a major stress reliever because I enjoy the sport so much and being around the people.
What is your advice to someone considering Knox?
I would suggest, if you can, to come visit because I think it really helps. It solidified a lot of things I was worried about. I did a few campus visits on a weekend, and Knox was one of them. I came here, and the people were so nice. It’s a smaller school and I'm from a smaller area, so I just really felt like I could fit in here and feel comfortable and at home.
Talking to admission and financial aid helped me a lot as well because I personally didn’t think I was going to be able to afford Knox, but they worked with me and helped me through the financial aid process, which helped a lot. I don’t know if I would have been able to come here had I not reached out and talked to them. I feel like you just need to pick the place that feels the most like home to you, so if you’re able to visit, I think that’s amazing. If you can’t, then talking to students—if they have virtual events or anything like that—is important.