Kaitlyn Rule ’19  |   Published November 11, 2015

Top scholars Gustafson, Saulcy studying biochemistry, on athletic teams

Gustafson, Saulcy received top scholarship, share other similarities
  • Freshmen Kathryn Saulcy of Bloomington & Alison Gustafson of Kewanee
MONMOUTH, Ill. — Being named a Midwest Scholar at Monmouth College means more than just receiving a four-year, full tuition scholarship. It means aspiring to represent the ideal Monmouth student – one who is actively engaged in achieving excellence both in the classroom and beyond. The two newest Midwest Scholars – freshmen Alison Gustafson of Kewanee and Kathryn Saulcy of Bloomington – are not only upholding that standard, but are doing so in remarkably similar fashion. Both are biochemistry majors and both are active in varsity athletics.   Gustafson is a volleyball player who also wants to explore the pre-health clubs on campus. Saulcy is a member of the cross country team, the American Chemical Association and the Newman Club, an organization for Catholic college students. During their senior year of high school, Gustafson and Saulcy competed against scores of other outstanding students who had applied to Monmouth, writing essays and being interviewed by faculty and staff on a snowy Saturday last February.   The scholarship committee selected students who they believed would excel academically in college and become leaders or very involved students. “The (scholarship) program is what helped me to decide to come here,” said Gustafson. “It’s a really great program.”   “The small family atmosphere that the campus has was a big influencing role as well, and the athletic program allowed me to run cross country while still focusing on my education,” said Saulcy.
Both scholars agree there is much to get involved with on campus, and they are still waiting to get fully settled in before they go out and “try everything.” “It’s nice to be on a small campus where I can get to know so many people and still try out so many different things,” Gustafson said.   “I have people to go talk to, and people who come talk to me,” said Saulcy of her experience with the cross country team. “We are one big family.”   Apart from cocurricular activities, both students enjoy their chemistry classes. Gustafson appreciates the lab experiments, as it’s something she was not exposed to in high school, while Saulcy said she likes that she “has three professors, basically, for one class, so I’m getting to know most of the chemistry department already.”   Both students acknowledge a significant transition from high school, and agree that the most difficult aspect of college is managing their time and getting everything done. “You become a lot more independent,” Saulcy said.   When the two have time out of their busy schedules, Gustafson said she enjoys baking, reading and travel. So far she has been to England, Mexico and the Bahamas. Saulcy likes to read and volunteer at hospitals. She enjoys being around anything in the medical field because she wants to become a doctor.   “Medicine is my calling,” she said. “I know the amount of work it will take and I’m ready for the challenge.”   The future for Gustafson and Saulcy certainly looks bright, and before they get on to their professional careers, it’s very possible that more honors from Monmouth College await them.
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