With another successful commencement behind us, recent High Point University graduates are preparing to commence prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior from the Class of 2018:
Name: Alex Hank
Hometown: Naples, Florida
Major: Hank graduated with a B.S. in exercise science with a concentration in health and wellness.
Post-graduation plans: Hank is pursing her graduate degree in cardiovascular perfusion at the Medical University of South Carolina.
How HPU helped you get there: “My years at HPU definitely prepared me to be a competitive and desirable applicant to a top graduate schools by providing me with the skills necessary to succeed. As an athlete, I quickly learned how to prioritize tasks and be efficient with my time to get everything done. As early as my freshman year, I had a strong interest in the medical field. My advisor encouraged me to seek out and shadow medical professionals in various fields, and I completed two shadowing experiences at the Mayo Clinic and the Duke University Hospital. Through these two exciting experiences, I saw the correlations between a cardiovascular perfusionist in the operating room and believe it or not, the skills I had learned through being a goalkeeper. Remaining focused, calm and in close communication with other members of the surgical team were all familiar skills I used as a goalkeeper out on the playing field. I was hooked! I found my niche. Career and Professional Development was one of the most helpful resources I utilized at HPU. They helped me fine tune my resume and provided me with valuable interviewing techniques and networking skills. Each time I walked in, I was greeted with a warm welcome followed by a productive, informative meeting even if it was just a 20 minute gap between classes and soccer practice. The career advisors at HPU have a genuine interest in you as a person and what you want to do. They gave me that extra self confidence I needed to succeed.”
Most impactful mentor at HPU: “During my four years at HPU, I was fortunate to have more than one mentor. Each was extremely helpful in their own way. For starters, Dr. Dan Tarara believed in me from day one and had a genuine interest in me as a person and what I wanted to pursue. When people learn I am interested in pursuing a career in perfusion, their first question is usually ‘what is that?’ Dr. Tarara went above and beyond researching the profession and helped me lay out a plan to reach my goals. Joe Cristy was also my mentor; he provided valuable support and positive encouragement. When things got tough in school or in soccer, he was the person who told me, ‘I have faith in you. I know you will succeed.’ He was always the first person to reach out to me after a big win and the first person celebrating with me when I received an award or began to hear of my acceptances into graduate programs. Knowing that Joe was always in my corner rooting for me encouraged me to continue chasing my dreams. Last but not least, Dr. Tony Kemerly was a huge mentor to me my last semester at HPU. He taught me how to view life with an open mind and to never be afraid to speak up for what I am passionate about — lifelong lessons I will carry with me always. As a mentor he provided me with wisdom and the guidance to reach my full potential.”
Most impactful moment at HPU: “My most impactful moment at HPU was being able to work as a university ambassador and lead university tours for prospective students. Being able to engage with and mentor these students was always the highlight of my week. Reflecting back on my college decision, I remember the impact my tour guide had on me by being passionate about her job and eager to help people who were once in her shoes. From that point forward, I knew I wanted the opportunity to extend the same helping hand when I became a High Point University student.”
Advice for underclassmen: “My advice to underclassmen would be to make a concerted effort to identify the positive aspects of your college experience. Seize opportunities to become involved, engage peers and seek out professors. Enroll in courses that are genuinely interesting and not just fulfilling requirements. Try something new and be present in the moment because the four years sure do fly by! Finally, manage expectations and embrace the journey.”