UST Explorer

A Blog for Undeclared Students

Category: Student Spotlight (page 1 of 6)

Student Spotlight- Tiffany Lynch-Faulkner

Tiffany Lynch-Faulkner is a sophomore from Wilmington, DE who chose to come to UD in part because she was comfortable with it being close to home. Although she had interest in how the brain works in high school (she even completed a two week program at Duke University where she got to dissect brains!), she came to the University of Delaware through the University Studies Program. She says that she wasn’t sure which direction she wanted to focus on, so coming into college undeclared helped her to get her ideas together. She says that just being in the Center for Academic Success building and around others who were unsure about their majors made her feel more calm.

Tiffany recalls her UST advisor (along with the classes she took and the Major Finder website) as being essential in narrowing down that she wanted to declare a Neuroscience major with a Psychology concentration. She declared this at the end of her first year, but is still undecided about a minor. She is currently thinking about Africana Studies, due to a very interactive instructor she had who made her love the subject matter, as well as Women and Gender Studies, due to everything going on in the world right now. She also thinks it would be great to focus specifically on women’s neurological health and wellbeing.

Currently, she loves all of her hands-on Neuroscience classes at UD. She enjoys meeting so many different people and building lifelong connections with roommates, classmates and teachers.  Tiffany is a UST Peer Liaison, a member of the Black Student Association (BSA), and works at the Little Bob gym. She plans to get her Master’s Degree and would love to do clinical research on neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Tiffany has a lot of great advice for University Studies students:

  1. It is important to work closely with your advisor- they are your best resource!
  2. Try things you may not be comfortable with because those might be the things that you end up loving and becoming a part of your undergraduate path.
  3. Get engaged in your classes!
  4. It is good to hear other’s experiences, but don’t base your experience solely off of everyone else’s. For example, don’t feel like you are behind or something you are doing is wrong based on what your peers and friends are doing.
  5. It is important to go with the flow and take your time. Don’t be scared to declare your major a little later than expected or not know what your next move is.


Student Spotlight- Grace Clagett

Grace is a senior who hails from Elkridge, Maryland. After earning a scholarship to attend the University of Delaware, she says it made her decision a lot easier when thinking about what school to attend. In addition, the University Studies Program really drew her to attend UD as well. She reports that a lot of other schools she applied to made her choose a major, which she didn’t want to do since she truly had no idea what she wanted to do coming into college.

When first meeting with her UST advisor, Grace was able to identity interests in business, the environment, and health science, but didn’t really know where to go from there. At one point she was also leaning towards something in Computer Science or Information Systems, but after taking some of those classes, realized it was not for her and started leaning more towards the business side of things. She first had thoughts about Finance or Operations Management, but after taking MISY160, she found that the Management Information Systems major would be a great fit for her.

Grace notes that the best thing about UD is definitely the people. The relationships you make here are irreplaceable, so she recommends making a lot of connections. She has certainly done so herself as she stays busy with Greek life (Gamma Phi Beta), Women in Business, working as a Peer Mentor for UNIV101, and volunteering as a Peer Liaison for University Studies. She has also been involved in intramural sports and as a media relations representative for UDance.

Grace’s advice for other UD students is to “explore any interests you may have. I thought I had my major decided twice before I ended up with MIS. Since you usually have to take so many breadth requirements, you will most likely not be behind if you work with your advisor to create your schedule every semester”.

This photo is from when Grace climbed to the top of a volcano in Scotland over the summer.

Student Spotlight: Jon Palmeri

Jon is a junior in the University Studies Program who will soon be switching to Mathematics. He is a Blue Hen Ambassador (“I love giving tours!”) and is a part of the newly formed Varsity Esports program (“The new arena is very cool!”). Jon also recently helped the UST staff with our virtual Decision Day presentations.

Describe your process for choosing your current major/majors of interest. Were there any resources you utilized to help you?

Meeting with my advisor was by far and away the most useful part of the process to find my current major. Having the opportunity to sit down and discuss my interests and what I felt I was truly passionate about really helped me find a path that I wanted to follow for my major. The courses that I took during my journey to find a major were another big factor that pointed me towards certain majors and away from others.

What advice do you have for new or prospective UST students?

Don’t worry about being a University Studies student. You’re part of one of the best programs on campus! In the beginning, you still have the opportunity to take the same courses that you would be taking even in a specific major, so don’t feel too discouraged about not being a part of that major. Also, at the same time, you have some of the best resources that can be found on campus on hand!

What do you know now that you wish you had known when you first started at UD?

I wish I could go back and tell myself that everyone I find on campus is here to help. The times where I found myself struggling trying to figure things out on my own could have been so easily avoided if I had just simply asked someone else for their help or input. There are resources for any sort of problem or concern that you would or could have during your time here, and they are all here to help YOU!

Student Spotlight: Kennedy Medley

Kennedy is one the UST Peer Liaisons and currently a sophomore majoring in English with an interest in healthcare management. Last summer she enjoyed her time as a research intern with Community Outreach. She has also done job shadowing to help her with her career decision-making.

Describe your process for choosing your current major of interest. Were there any resources you utilized to help you?

Choosing a major has been a tough process for me, but I wouldn’t change the way I went about my decisions. The career center has definitely been a great resource with tests geared to finding out more about who I am!

What advice do you have for new or prospective UST students?

It is okay to not know! You should really allow yourself to try new things and different classes to know more about yourself.

What do you know now that you wish you had known when you first started at UD?

Something that I know now that I wish I knew was that going into college no one really has everything figured out! We are all going through the most transformative experiences of our lives.

What’s something that you use as an outlet or escape when everything gets tough?

Mine is to journal. I journal and write everything I’m thinking about even if it doesn’t make sense!

Student Spotlight: Callie Westerlund

Callie is a junior majoring in Communication with a concentration in Media Communication. She is also a former UST student and a current UST peer liaison. She is from Baltimore, MD, and in her free time loves to create art and cook. Additionally, she enjoys binge-watching TV shows on Netflix. “Most recently I watched the series ‘YOU’ and loved it!”

Describe your process for choosing your current major/majors of interest. Were there any resources you utilized to help you?

When I first came to college I was sure that I wanted to be a marketing major. Quickly as I started to learn more about business classes I noticed that they were very math-heavy. It was then that I made the decision to move forward with communications, and I couldn’t be happier. This was all thanks to the help of Adrian McCleary, who guided me during my major selection.

What are you involved in outside of the classroom?

Outside of the classroom I am involved with UDress and Rent the Runway. I am very passionate about both of these organizations and love to talk about my experience with them. Additionally, I am a social media manager for a medical spa.

What advice do you have for new or prospective UST students?

Trust your gut and know when something feels right and something doesn’t. I think oftentimes when we first get to college we put too much pressure on ourselves to find the right major that will make us most “successful”. I think it’s important to know what your interests are and being open to change when it comes about.

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