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Shelby Graham ’22

Biochemistry major

Mount Union has prepared me by not only offering the necessary schooling for my career, but also giving me opportunities to share my servant's heart.


B.S., Biochemistry 


Hebron, Ohio

Feeling at Home

I learned about Mount Union by researching physician assistant programs in Ohio. Mount Union's program was highly regarded, so going here for undergrad was top on my list. Mount Union was the first college that I visited, and I fell in love with the campus immediately. I felt at home, the people were so kind and genuine, the science program and building were impressive, the professors were extremely helpful and passionate, and the campus itself was beautiful. I looked at other schools, but I just kept coming back to Mount Union. I also received the Presidential Scholarship and smaller, local scholarships. The faculty and staff are the number one thing that makes Mount Union feel like home. They always go out of their way to help you, whether that is academically or personally. An example is that the chemistry department would host an annual fall picnic at one of the professor's homes. It was a great way to loosen up and get to know the chemistry faculty and other chemistry students. I think experiences like that are what make Mount Union unique.


Preparing for PA School

I chose biochemistry as my major because it will best prepare me for PA school. It encompasses many of the needed prerequisites and challenges me to work harder, think deeper, and seek help when I need it. The Integrative Core will make me a better professional in my field because it challenges me to expand my knowledge on issues that we face today, such as with diversity and minority groups. I have been able to have unique experiences that dive deeper in a specific area of those topics. For example, I was able to create a painting as part of a project in my Human Rights in Literature and Film class to explore more about emotional trauma in relationships. It has made me into a more well-rounded individual as I study different fields rather than strictly the science courses for my major.


Honors Program Opportunites 

One unique opportunity that I've had through the Honors Program is my HON 350 project, which encompasses the diversity and human rights aspects that I learned through my Honors Exploration course. I am now using those resources to delve deeper into discriminations and human rights violations that have occurred in the health field in the past and relating it to current issues that still persist. I am primarily focusing on the infamous Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment, in which African-American individuals were taken advantage of in medical research as needed treatment was withheld from them when it was readily available. The project explains the precautions and protocols now in place to prevent such an event from occurring again, such as the Institutional Review Board reviewing proposed research and monitoring experiments involving human subjects.


Pursuing Dreams

My ultimate career goal is to become a physician assistant, which encompasses my ultimate dream to pursue God's calling for me. Matthew 10:7-8 says, "And proclaim as you go, saying, 'The kingdom of heaven is at hand.' Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received with paying; give without pay." I am called to love God, love people, and make disciples. I hold this verse close to my heart as I think about my future in the medical field. Mount Union has prepared me by not only offering the necessary schooling for my career, but also giving me opportunities to share my servant's heart. I am valued and supported on campus by faculty, staff, students, and the organizations I'm involved in.

Go With Your Gut

I would tell high school students to go with their gut feeling when deciding between colleges. It feels like the most important and stressful decision in the world. Maybe you're scared that you'll make a wrong choice but going with the school that makes you feel the most as home is the most important part of setting your path up for success. Being able to feel comfortable, valued, and supported are foundational to making a successful future.