Kristen Smith-Women’s Cross Country
Why did you choose to attend Vanderbilt?
I’m originally from Michigan and wanted to experience the Southern culture, and escape the nasty norhtern winters. Vanderbilt’s academic reputation made this school my first choice.
What are your career goals?
I plan to earn a dual degree in nursing and public health. I want to make a difference in less privileged communities by helping to deveop and implement programs that address population health disparities. Ultimately I hope to dramatically reduce chronic illnesses that affect lower income communities at higher rates including but not limited to obesity, cancer, and diabetes.
What does it take to be academically successful at Vanderbilt?
Time management is critical for academic success. Practice and travel consume a lot of time, so you also have to be willing to sacrifice the social life most other students get to experience.
How do you manage your demanding schedule?
I do my best to get ahead during my “easier” weeks. I also attempt to get at least 5-6 hours of sleep each night so I do not become so fatigued by the end of the week that I have become inefficient and don’t get much done.
What is your ritual before taking a test?
I begin by looking over my notes 4-5 days before, and then go over them in detail a day or two before the exam. I always make sure I eat a good meal and drink a cup of coffee the hour before I go to the class.
What is your favorite quote?
“I don’t believe you have to be better than everyone else. I believe you have to be better than you ever thought you could be.”-Ken Venturi
“Adversity is like strong wind. It tears away from us all but the things that cannot be torn, so that we see ourselves as we really are.”-Arthur Golden