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Liz Jeans ′11

 

Liz, a Rhodes senior and chemistry major from Scottsdale, AZ, lives off campus in a downtown neighborhood along the Mississippi River. She loves being part of the chemistry department’s "one big family” and its small classes and study groups. Her passion lies in medicine, so she coordinates volunteers for local hospitals and healthcare organizations through Rhodes′ Kinney Community Service Program. Liz hadn’t planned to go Greek, but she went through recruitment and discovered a great group of friends in Kappa Delta sorority. She credits Rhodes with giving her the confidence to actively pursue her dreams—and the opportunities to make them happen.

How involved are you in the Chemistry department?
I do research in computational chemistry under the guidance Dr. Mauricio Cafiero. I am the president and co-founder of Gamma Sigma Epsilon, the chemistry honor society. My peer, Caroline Lee, and I founded this organization to reward people for the hard work they do in their chemistry courses. We also take our knowledge of chemistry out into the community and work at science fairs. Lastly, I am a member of ACS (American Chemical Society).

And you also work with the Kinney Program?
My role in Kinney is to help others find service sites and coordinate projects for Rhodes. I think a lot of people come to Rhodes knowing they want to do service but don’t know where. I try to match them where I think they would enjoy volunteering. This year, I am the Hospitals and Healthcare coordinator.

How do you balance school and fun?
I work as hard as possible during the week, but make sure to take some free time on the weekends and at nights. I put a big emphasis on making sure that I still have a great social life.

Do you work off campus as well?
Freshman and sophomore year I worked at St. Jude in a research lab dealing with “orphan” diseases, predominantly malaria. Then as a junior, I took an internship at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital doing a pediatric rotation. I have spent a lot of time working at the Med in the Trauma department. This past summer, I took a fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona, on a research team that was working on dermatitis allergy projects. This semester I am doing an internship at the Campbell Orthopedic Clinic. I may have found a true passion for going into orthopedics.

The future: What does it look like?
I am applying right now to masters programs. I guess it all relates back to Kinney in a way. I do not believe that you can be an effective doctor unless you understand health-care policies. So, I would like to spend the next two years focusing on public healthcare: either through a master’s program or by volunteering through the Peace Corps. After I gain some knowledge about the real scene behind healthcare policies, nationally and locally, I want to apply to medical school.

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