I’m really grateful for the AMS program and the people it’s brought into my life.Eliza Lloyd ’22 Brookfield, Conn.
Describe your experience with the Alumni Memorial Scholars (AMS) program at Colgate.
I definitely think being a part of the AMS program has enhanced my experience at Colgate. Some of my best friends to this day I met through AMS; two of them I live with! I also think the grant money provides an incredible opportunity to travel and study something that fascinates you but is not traditionally offered at Colgate. I also want to say that our advisers; Rebecca, our faculty director; and Doug, our administrative dean, have really gone above and beyond, especially this past year, making sure we’re all hanging in there and reminding us that they care.
How would you describe your AMS peers?
The AMS program has students with a wide range of interests and backgrounds, and I’ve loved being able to meet people whom I otherwise would not have. The AMS preorientation was great for that. I met nearly everyone in my AMS class and some upperclassmen too. I think having that immediate community made the transition into Colgate that much easier. We also all live in the same commons the first year, which definitely helped build community. Often now, I will meet someone and then learn they are AMS, and it’s an immediate bonding moment. “You’re in AMS? So am I!” I’m grateful for the AMS program and the people it’s brought into my life.
The AMS program provides research and project grants. How have you used these grants?
I was approved to use my grant money last spring. One of my best friends, who is also in the program, and I were planning on traveling to Norway, Greece, and Japan to study antimicrobial resistance and alternative medicine. Unfortunately, that trip was cancelled due to the pandemic. We are hoping to be able to do that same project during the winter of our senior year. If international travel is not approved by then, we have considered a number of other trips studying alternative medicine on the West Coast, national parks, or perhaps even racial prejudice in Hawai’i. We’re hopeful that, despite the delay, we’ll be able to use our grant for a meaningful and interesting project.
Have you had a mentor at Colgate?
Yes, definitely. My biggest mentors would probably be my two advisers, Professor Yoshino (neuroscience) and Professor Meyer (philosophy). They have been a huge help advising me on academic decisions, and I know they are interested in my life and care for my well-being. When everything was in-person, I loved to just stop by their offices for a chat to catch up. I have also gotten a lot of great advice from upperclassmen including Sasha, my AMS mentor, and other students in similar programs as me who have shared their experiences and made mine that much smoother.
Even though our main goal is to increase voter turnout and streamline the voting process, we use these collaborative events as a way to encourage Colgate students to be educated.
What advice would you give to students in the Class of 2025 who have been selected to be in the AMS program?
Something that I did before coming to Colgate was identifying things that I was interested in, whether that be a major/minor, a student group, or some other Colgate program, and
I reached out to people who would have insights on that opportunity. For example, I knew I wanted to study neuroscience, so in the first semester, I reached out to Professor Yoshino, who, at that time, had no idea who I was, and I asked to meet. He laid out a four-year academic plan for me in our first meeting and since then has helped me figure out what choices are best for me. I was also interested in the National Institutes of
Health study group, so I reached out to a student who had just gone and asked her about the program and her experience. Lacrosse was also important to me in high school, so I contacted the leader of club lacrosse and asked about their plans for the upcoming year. I also did a lot of research into the AMS program and explored the list of past projects that students have done.
All of these things helped me get a better sense of what I could expect coming to Colgate and how I might fit into the community. To newly selected AMS students who have yet to make their decision, I would say do your research and talk to people. The students, faculty, and staff at Colgate are incredible and more than willing to help you.
What are your plans after Colgate?
Right now, I’m finishing up my junior year, so I don’t have any concrete plans yet. However, I will be an intern at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) this summer (virtually) and next fall (in-person). If all goes well, I hope to be back at NIH after graduation to complete a post-baccalaureate, and then on to graduate school for neuroscience, molecular biology, or something in that realm of science. I think, ultimately, I want a career in research and/or academia. Right now, I’m just excited for the immediate future, to spend the summer in Hamilton doing research and being with some of my best friends.