As an Honors Program student juggling the balance of advanced courses, a major in biochemistry, college athletics and a commute to school, Samantha Zurbriggen ’22, is committed to someday contributing to the understanding and treatment of illnesses that do not yet have a cure.
Samantha has seized the opportunity of being part of a small campus with caring and dedicated professors, conducting research with Sunghee Lee, Ph.D., Board of Trustees Endowed Professor, as part of Dr. Lee’s research group, Project Symphony. This summer, she will be participating in further research as a Clare Boothe Luce (CBL) Research Scholar, which is an award dedicated to women in the physical sciences, mathematics, and computer science.
Samantha shares, “Receiving this award means having more resources and funding to do research. It is also a great opportunity to learn more about the instruments in the laboratory and get some first-hand experience working in such an environment. By doing this, it will help me grow as a scientist and give me more knowledge as to what is expected of me in this field.”
She is also on the women’s rowing team, where she received the “Hammer Award” for being most improved and setting the record time for the women’s team in the 2,000 and 5,000 meter tests. She recalls her first time visiting Iona as a junior in high school and adds, “I fell in love with the atmosphere here. Because of the tight-knit community, I knew Iona would give me the chance to better know my professors and the people that I will be spending my college years with. The people here were all so friendly and nice that I really felt that Iona was the best fit for me. Even as a smaller school, Iona has so many academic opportunities, from the Honors Program to advanced courses in the sciences, as well as an abundance of clubs, activities, and sports to try.”
Samantha, who is looking forward to continuing her research and finding her own way to “Move the World,” wants new students to know, “If you try your best, you will succeed. And, even though there are other students who want the same thing, you can work hard to be on top.”