Student Spotlight

Current and former students describe how they came to choose Miami, life as a Miami student, the value of a liberal arts education, their study abroad experiences and internships, and more.

Olivia Wetsch

photo of Olivia Wetsch(Class of 2018)

I chose Miami primarily for their research opportunities, because I wanted to look into a career in biology research. Miami has always stressed its opportunities to get involved with faculty on research projects, which was very attractive to me. I also was interested in Miami's many study abroad programs and the fact that there seemed to be a student club for just about everything.


See what Olviia had to say about her research on cricket frog declines in the Midwest.


Morgan Nguyen

photo of Morgan Nguyen(Class of 2018)

To put it succinctly, a liberal arts education trains one in the skills of the everyday world, and this really becomes the foundation for your future career. While engineering and business may be more specific and technical, the liberal arts builds your academic character as a scholar!


See what Morgan had to say about her service learning experiences with the Scholar Leader Community program.


Rachel Serafin

photo of Rachel Serafin(Class of 2018)

Taking on a variety of problems is key to helping you to grow as a person. That's what the liberal arts mean for me. I tell myself that after college, when again am I ever going to have such a great opportunity to learn the things I want to learn? The best thing I've done in college is take those extra classes that don't necessarily count for a requirement — but if it's something you're interested in, it can lead you to something that you did not know that you'd want to do!


Read what Rachel had to say about her service activities and study abroad experiences.


Megan Zimmerer

photo of Megan Zimmerer(Class of 2018)

When I was in seventh grade, I'd decided I'd be a doctor, and I'd never really faltered from that dream until I came to Miami. Although I realized that I didn't have the passion for science that I'd expected, I was able to quickly divert my passion instead into international relations and languages. I'm now all the happier that I did!


See what Megan had to say about her 10-week study abroad in Jordan and her work with the United Nations in New York City.


Tiffany Campbell

photo of Tiffany Campbell(Class of 2018)

Not only are professors at Miami really good teachers, but they're also very open with mentorship and advising. Sometimes I'll have a repeat professor, giving me a better chance to get to know them. I've found it's often really helpful to go to office hours to clarify course material and get to know professors on a more personal level.


See what Tiffany had to say about Miami and her passion for research.


Sydney Chuen

photo of Sydney Chuen(Class of 2020)

I applied to Miami wanting to pursue my passion for foreign languages and cultures but not knowing exactly how to do it or what it would turn into…What I didn't know in the beginning was how well I would fit in my particular area of study and how open it would be to customization. Having a rough idea of my interests opened up so many possibilities.


Read what Sydney had to say about her migrant/refugee research in France and Morocco.


Ellen Florek

photo of Ellen Florek(Class of 2019)

As an undergraduate liberal arts major, I feel I've been given a great edge when it comes time to find a job or graduate school. Many law and medical schools are more interested in accepting more well-rounded candidates because they can offer new and dynamic perspectives.


See what Ellen had to say about studying abroad and finding her passion at Miami.


Emily Tatum

photo of Emily Tatum(Class of 2019)

I was drawn to [Miami's] strong focus on undergraduate education…I had heard many great things about Miami professors and their attention to students, and I have certainly found that to be true in my experience.


Read what Emily had to say about her study-abroad experiences in Wales, Cuba, and Ecuador.


Kate Hanley

photo of Kate Hanley(Class of 2018)

One of the best things about my East Asian Languages and Cultures major is that it's made up of many different concepts. It's not just language, art, history, cultures and so on — it's more than the sum of its parts.


Read what Kate had to say about her involvement in campus organizations and her study abroad trip to China.


Olivia Vandervoort

photo of Olivia Vandervoort(Class of 2017)

I've taken part in a number of student groups. During my freshman year I became a senator for Associated Student Government (ASG), which led to a greater leadership role as President Pro-Tempore. This year I'm a member of ASG's Executive Cabinet as Chief of Staff, where I've been helping out our current president, Maggie Reilly. It's the most senior leadership position I've had at Miami, and it has allowed me to work occasionally with Dr. Gregory Crawford, the new university president.


Read what Olivia had to say about her leadership roles and study abroad experience.


Kaylie Schunk

photo of Kaylie Schunk(Class of 2018)

Developing critical thinking and analysis skills is truly what employers want, and they make you a more dynamic individual. I think that the liberal arts encourage us to learn broadly as we expand these skills. They incorporate not only sciences like chemistry and microbiology, which focus on what happens in nature and the universe, but also subjects like history and political science, where we learn about people.


Read what Kaylie had to say about her research on the Miami Tribe and early American Republic.


Heather Burich

photo of Heather Burich(Class of 2019)

A liberal arts education teaches you how to write well, which I believe is a skill that is often overlooked, especially in the professional world. Miami's big emphasis on the liberal arts helps create a holistic sense of all careers or fields you may wish to enter, including making key connections between different ones, like mechanical engineering and history, which may not be clear at first.


Read what Heather had to say about her research focused on visual representation of mental illness in art.


Daniel McClurkin

photo of Daniel McClurkin(Class of 2017)

The liberal arts work off of the primary assumption that there is no such thing as non-interdisciplinary approaches to problems; there is no job that does not deal with multiple fields. For example, when I worked in an Oxford retirement community, it was not just about applying what I knew from gerontology lectures, but it was also about understanding and practicing communicative skills in order to sincerely engage with the residents in such a way that they didn't feel they were being talked down to or disrespected.


Read what Daniel had to say about his ethnographic fieldwork and extracurricular creative arts activities.


Keiko Wilkins

photo of Keiko Wilkins(Class of 2017)

At Miami there are unique events every day. Being able to learn something completely new each time is very valuable. Since I am interested in so many different topics, I try to go to as many events as I can to learn something new. Miami offers many experiences where I can branch out, meet new people, and keep learning!


Read what Keiko had to say about her research interests and leadership roles.