Senior Profile: Kristen Upton

Photo by Atticus Rice.Photo by Atticus Rice.

What is your preferred name?

Kristen.

What is your major and minor?

Chemistry with a specialization in Biochemistry and Exercise Chemistry majors and Biology minor.

What are some of the jobs you held while at McDaniel?

Student Ambassador for Admissions and Peer Tutor for the SASS office.

What organizations were you a part of at McDaniel? What positions did you hold?

Captain of the McDaniel Women’s Soccer Team (2017), President of Gamma Sigma Epsilon, Vice President of the Kinesiology Club, Secretary of Beta Beta Beta, President/Co-Founder of Pre-Health Club, Heroes Helping Hopkins, Alpha Lambda Delta, and Tournament of Champions member.

Did you enjoy your time at McDaniel? How?

I loved my time at McDaniel! It was so great to in part to the friends that I made, the groups I was a part of, and the places I got to travel to. I tried to get involved with different organizations on campus, and my main family became the women’s soccer team, and with all the time that we spent together on an off the field, they truly made me smile and laugh every day, and made sure I was being my best self. With all of the classes I was in and groups I was a part of, I met a lot of people who really made my time at McDaniel worthwhile.

Who do you think is/was your best mentor(s)?

Dr. Ferraris has been my main mentor during my time at McDaniel. He has helped to support me in many aspects during my time here at McDaniel. He allowed me to gain research experience by working in his lab and presenting research at two national conferences. As our faculty advisor, he was always there to support me and my teammates during our season. He also helped guide me and support me with my future endeavors.

What is your best memory at McDaniel?

It’s hard to pick just one, but some of my favorite memories at McDaniel were the times I was able to go abroad. My first trip was a Jan Term to Italy, and it was amazing, interesting, and I was lucky because I got to share this experience with my best friends. This Jan Term was a photography class and we essentially got to be tourists and were encouraged to take a lot of pictures (which I definitely did). Our trip took us from Rome to Amalfi, then on a ferry over to Sicily where we went almost all the way around the island. The sites, history, and the food were all amazing, and it was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime trip!

I was lucky because shortly after I was able to travel to Spain with my teammates, and traveling with twenty of my best friends made the experience even better. Our trip was split between the beaches and city of Barcelona, and in modern and historical Madrid. We were able to be tourists, explore the cities, eat some really good food, but we were also able to play in four international matches! My times traveling abroad were definitely some of my best memories at McDaniel, and I can not wait to travel again.

What were some of the challenges you encountered and how did you overcome them?

I think like any student-athlete, you have the challenge finding the balance between academics, athletics, and social activities. You want to give your best on the field, in the classroom, and still be able to hang out and relax with your friends. The solution that I found was time management, and prioritizing activities. You can only have so many hours in the day, but I found that if you can focus and get your work done, you can compete with your teams, and still have the time to do the extra stuff you want to do. However, there are times that you have to prioritize, and make the decision of what you should/need to do over what you want to do.

What are your plans for after graduation?

My plans for after graduation include going to medical school.

What advice can you give to those not graduating?

Enjoy your time here, make memories, and have fun because it goes by faster than you think.

Is there anything else you want to share with the McDaniel community?

I would just like to say thank you to everyone who has made my time at McDaniel so memorable. Thank you to the professors that helped me to learn so much information. Thank you to my coaches that helped me play the sport I love for four more years. Thank you to my teammates, who are my second family, for all the jokes and laughter, the support, and four memorable seasons. Thank you to everyone that has helped me get from my first day at McDaniel all the way to graduation.