Dexter, Maine, native Ashley Chabot ’13 breaks from her graduate studies in Cell and Organ Systems Physiology at the University of Delaware to share how her Earlham neuroscience degree has readied her for her ongoing education.
EC: What were some significant classroom experiences at Earlham?
AC: Working in groups, particularly when everyone in a group received the same grade, reflected the “real world.” Even if you helped someone with his or her part, or that you did all the editing…in the end, the final product had everyone’s name on it and represented everyone equally. In science classes, learning the hands-on lab techniques enabled me to feel comfortable with skills that I use today.
EC: Who were influential faculty/staff?
AC: Of many, six played a major role. I spent most of my first days at Earlham with Bill Kinsey (Athletic Trainer), since my work-study job was assisting him and being a manager for the football team. Bill and his welcoming training room made me want to stay at Earlham. Through Vince Punzo’s (psychology) classes, I developed my ability to understand course material and be a valuable group member. He reminded me that sharing knowledge is just as important as learning more. Kathy Milar (psychology) pushed me to be the best that I could be. She could see the best end product possible and wouldn’t accept anything less. As director of the McNair program, Joann Quinones (English) walked me through every step of the graduate school process, helping me draft personal essays and keeping in touch as we waited to learn of my acceptance. I took science classes with Bob Rosenberg (biology) nearly every semester at Earlham, and he was always willing to clarify subject material. I worked with Peter Blair (biology) for two summers as he conducted research on annotating the malaria genome.
EC: How did Earlham prepare you for your current area of study and graduate work?
AC: The strong lab skills gained through my Immunology class can be taken anywhere. The material that I need to know in graduate school is the same information that I learned in CGI, Cell Physiology and Anatomy & Physiology. The books that I’m using in graduate school are the same ones used in my Earlham classes, so I can refer to past notes and lecture material for review. Earlham has prepared me well!
EC: What are your future career plans?
AC: Working in a children’s research hospital, enhancing the lives of those affected by childhood illness.