Leah Kelly: Class of 2008
Tucson, Arizona – Tucson High Magnet School
Major: Art History & Chemistry
Currently: Pursuing Ph.D. at the University of Arizona
How did you find out about Beloit? Did you know a lot about Beloit when you first visited campus?
“I got a large amount of mail from Beloit, which is the only way I heard about Beloit in the first place. There were no Beloit College representatives at the college fairs or coming to visit my high school, so all I knew was that it was the school that had turtles on everything, and that gave free stickers out on the cover of their admissions information packet, and that Beloit had Division 3 athletics, including a softball team. I knew I wanted to go to a small college, to experience four seasons, and to keep playing softball- so I applied to Beloit along with a handful of other small liberal arts schools.”
“When I first visited Beloit, all I knew was that they wrote the most personalized admissions letter I received. I also knew that it was in the Midwest, and that I should be prepared to freeze. Apart from that Beloit was pretty much a mystery to me.”
We are focusing a lot on Liberal Arts in Practice at Beloit; so as part of what you practice(d) name one aspect that you took away(will take) from being a Beloit student-athlete that you use in your everyday life.
“If anything I would call my four years at Beloit a Liberal Arts experience. The ability to major in two “unrelated” subjects is just one of those things that I could never have done at a state school without spending a few extra years to do so. Some other things that I took advantage of while at Beloit would be special interest housing, clubs, student research, TA’ing, RA’ing, tutoring, Gold Key… the list goes on. There are so many activities at your fingers… it’s hard not to find yourself incredibly busy.”
“Being a Beloit student-athlete made my life just that much busier. Being on a sports team also gave me an opportunity to meet other amazing women that I wouldn’t have necessarily seen in any of my classes. Beloit is all about getting involved, and I feel like being on a team with a group of people who have varied interests gives you the opportunity to hear about all sorts of things happening in the college and community.”
What (if any) accolades did you receive (Academically/Athletically) while being a student-athlete?
Dean’s List, Academic All-Conference, Ferwerda Merit Scholarship in Chemistry (2 years), 1st Team All Conference (Softball, Catcher), and the Free Radical Award, as well as travel grants…
If you could name one class or professor (mentor) that really meant something to you while at Beloit, who or what would that be?
“No fair! I can’t even try to name just one!” :)
Name one of the most rewarding experiences you took part in while at Beloit College?
“Yet again, naming just one thing is just too hard, but here goes:
Being an RA was probably one of the most rewarding experiences I took part in at Beloit. It was a lot of work, pushed my comfort zone every once in a while, but I feel like I am much better for it. It was one of the experiences at Beloit that really helped me to learn more about who I am. Working with the other RAs and Res. Life was incredible, everyone was super supportive and we got to be pretty close. To be able to live with and interact with such wonderful people just by being placed on a floor was also something that really made my time at Beloit just that much better.”
Where do you see yourself 5 years from now? - Name a career goal/aspiration you strive for.
“In five years I hope that I am finished with my PhD. My career goal is to teach Chemistry at a small liberal arts college (like Beloit). I would like to teach general chemistry and/or physical chemistry. I also have grand aspirations of starting a boutique where I could sell my own fashion designs, and of getting back into a printmaking studio to make science inspired art.”
“In ONE word I would sum up Beloit College as- Family.”