With another successful Commencement behind us, High Point University graduates are commencing 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 2020:
Name: Leann Werner
Hometown: Nesconset, New York
Post-graduation plans: Werner will be attending the New England College of Optometry to pursue her Doctor of Optometry in Boston, Massachusetts.
How HPU helped you get there: “HPU gave me opportunities in research and coursework that I would not have found at other schools. As an undergraduate, I had the chance to participate in research in organic chemistry and psychology because of the close-knit nature of HPU’s classrooms that allowed me to form relationships with my professors. I have also had the chance to be a part of an undergraduate human cadaver lab, which is not an experience found in most undergraduate programs. As a neuroscience major, a lot of my class and lab work directly related to what I would be learning in optometry school, which provided me with great conversation points during interviews. The Office of Career and Professional Development helped me craft the perfect resumé to send to graduate schools. During the graduate school interview process, I had lunch with existing students and admissions directors. Because of my experience at 1924 Prime, I felt extremely confident in my etiquette and table manners and prepared to present myself professionally over a meal.”
Most impactful mentor at HPU: “Dr. Ackerman has been an amazing mentor for me throughout my four years at HPU. I have been fortunate to have her as a professor my freshman, sophomore and senior year. By having her as a professor for multiple classes, she got to know me as a student and as a person and has served as an advisor whose opinion I truly value. She has helped me to realize my potential and I am extremely grateful to have her as a mentor!”
Most impactful moment at HPU: “When I was having trouble choosing a career path, I discussed my options with my advisor, Dr. Grider, and one of my mentors, Dr. Ackerman. After having these conversations, I was able to realize my potential, appreciate having options available due to my accomplishment of being accepted to some extremely different graduate programs, and select a career path that I am extremely excited about.”
Advice for underclassmen: “Having a balance between school and other areas of life is so important. You will need to devote time and effort into achieving your goals. Sometimes that will mean making sacrifices, but I assure you that it will always be worth it. Allow yourself to have fun too, though, because in these four years there will be so much opportunity to meet new people and try new things, and that should not be taken for granted.”