Hello! My name is Molly Rhein, and I graduated from the University of Scranton in December 2020 with a degree in Physiology. Choosing Physiology as my major was not necessarily a simple decision, but I am so glad I ended up here!
I started at the University of Scranton as a Biology Major with the intention of pursuing Veterinary Medicine after undergrad. I was not necessarily passionate about science prior to attending college, but I was passionate about animals and I figured this was the best route to have a future career in animal medicine. The Physiology Major became available at the University of Scranton after my first year, and I chose to switch majors. I made this decision after reading up on the program. As physiology is the “bedrock of biomedical education,” I felt that this major was more suited to my goals in animal medicine. I also thought that a newer major would come with smaller class sizes and therefore more interaction with my professors and peers.
Upon taking my first classes in Physiology, I was engaged like never before. I loved the idea of piecing together an organism like parts of a machine, from the cellular level all the way up to a organ level. I was no longer just regurgitating information from a textbook onto tests, but I was critically learning. It was at this point where I wasn’t just in this field for thinking of a future career with animals, but I developed a passion for Physiology itself. It took me a couple of years to realize, but I started to consider that a becoming a veterinarian might not be the only path for me. After discussions with my advisor and professors, I became keen on the prospect of pursing a higher degree in Physiology. I was loving the feeling of “problem-solving” in my physiology courses, and a future graduate program would give me more of that while working in a research laboratory.
When I graduated in December, I began applying to Ph.D. programs in Physiology all over the country. I recently accepted a really great opportunity to continue my education within the Integrative & Biomedical Physiology doctoral
program at Penn State University. I am so excited to start my next journey, and I know that it is the Physiology program at the UofS that made this possible. During grad school, I will be taking more courses in physiology while working in various labs under established researchers. My goal is to apply my experiences to conduct my own research in canine diseases. This career path in physiological & biomedical research allows me to reach animals on a broader scale than I could have ever imagined. I am so grateful I was given the opportunity to major in Physiology at the University of Scranton and I am so excited to see where this education leads me.