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CHASS Student of the Month – October 2008

Laura Andrews

Photo of Laura Andrews

  • Home Town: Chapel Hill
  • Class: Senior
  • Major(s):
    • German Studies
    • Pre-Dental Curriculum
    • Minors in Biology & Spanish
  • Sample Courses:
    • New German Cinema
    • German Civilization & Culture
    • Organic Chemistry I & II
    • Principles of Biochemistry
  • Activities:
    • Pre-Dental Club Co-president
    • NC-Missions of Mercy Traveling Dental Clinic
    • Study Abroad: Vienna, Austria (2006)
    • Intramural soccer
    • Part-time work in local orthodontics practice
  • Honors:
    • Dean’s List: 5 semesters
    • Delta Phi Alpha German Honor Society Vice President
  • Postgraduate Plans: Dental school
  • Career Goals: To become a dentist, perhaps specializing in orthodontics. I would like to work in a practice part-time and also volunteer here and abroad to offer dental care to the less fortunate.
Why did you choose CHASS?

I selected NCSU because it has such a diversity of majors to explore. As a freshman, I entered First Year College, but I was always attracted to the humanities. I originally chose Communication but then switched to German Studies and the pre-dental curriculum. Languages have always been interesting to me. The more languages you know, the more people you can talk to! Combining German and pre-dental provides a good counterbalance, so I do not have an overload of science.

What do you enjoy most about being an NCSU student?

The faculty has been great – professors like Lutz Kube and Helga Braunbeck in German Studies and Bruce Novak in Chemistry. In my language courses, the small class sizes allow me to establish close relationships with my instructors. Dr. Novak in Chemistry made sure that everyone understood the class material, offering extra office hours and review sessions. He truly went beyond what would be expected.

What has been your greatest challenge here at NC State?

There are just not enough hours in the day to do everything I’d like. I’m running around from 6 am to midnight, although I am the kind of person who enjoys feeling busy and productive. My planner hardly ever leaves my side. You have to be flexible about your time commitments because last-minute things always come up.

How has college changed you?

I have become more determined and focused. I have seen firsthand that hard work pays off. Of course nobody likes studying chemistry 10 hours a day or locking yourself in the library to read, but there is peace afterwards knowing that you did your best. I have also become more independent. For example, I took the initiative to locate a dental internship in Munich, Germany for this upcoming Spring.

Do you have any advice for incoming students?

Try to get the best grades you can, especially if you think you might go on to graduate school. Join one or two clubs right away when you arrive on campus because that’s how you meet people and start to network. Also, be open to new ideas. I wasn’t sure I would like chemistry or physics, but I actually found them extremely interesting. They explain the way the world works and can be applied to real problems.

Nominate a student for CHASS Student of the Month.