Joshua Dudek Fall 2019
Your student organization and your officer position?
Co-Chair of The Pott College Student Advisory Board
What makes USI and the Pott College special to you?
USI is such a beautiful campus and ever since I first arrived here for my initial visit I was welcomed as family. The Pott College along with its staff and faculty have become like a second family. They are always there for you when you need them and as a Biology major, I spent a lot of my time these last few years within the two buildings.
What are some of your favorite classes at Pott College and why?
I enjoyed the Microbiology lab with Dr. Sparks-Thissen. She is an amazing instructor and mentor to many within the Pott College. Dr. Sparks-Thissen not only taught us in lab but always made sure we had a plan for the next step in our lives, be that grad school or the workforce.
Why did you choose your current major(s) and minor(s) (if applicable)?
I chose Biology because I had always been very interested in biology and other sciences while in high school and before. Another reason I chose biology was that I knew that with this degree it will greatly prepare me for applying to Optometry School.
What has surprised you about college?
I was honestly surprised about how close I have become with all of my friends. In High School, I always was close to a few people, but something about college and USI brings people closer together and forges lifelong friendships.
What do you wish you had known as an incoming freshman?
Cherish each and every moment. The good and the bad while in college because these years will fly by in the blink of an eye.
What attributes make a student successful in college?
Outgoing, motivation for the next big adventure in life, friendly, and overall the desire to learn and not just “pass”
How do you stay focused when the demands of school, work, etc. seem overwhelming?
I think of everyone in my family and friends groups that are proud of where I am today and where I will be in a few years and it reminds me of why I chose what I want to do.
Who is your mentor?
Dr. Glenna Bower Ph.D.- Associate Dean of the Pott College
Dr. Bower has helped me grow in so many ways and she always is pushing me to be the best that I can even when I give a little push back. She has mentored me through tough times in college and I hope will continue to mentor me as I make my transition into grad school next year.
Dr. Kelli Payne OD- Local optometrist
Dr. Payne has only been my mentor for a few months but in that time she has taught me so much about the profession that I am so eager to be apart of. Anytime a possible teaching moment arises she never misses the opportunity.
I owe a lot to both of my mentors and I know I wouldn’t be in the place that I am today without them.
Are there any hidden gems at USI that you think more people should know about?
The USI-Burdette Trail and the lakes around campus. Whenever I needed a study break I would go hammock by the lakes or take a bike ride down the trail.
As your student organization’s president (or position you hold), what are some things you hope to achieve?
I hope to continue to grow the outreach and impact that the SAB has on the Pott College and USI as a whole. My two and a half years serving on the Board I have seen so many amazing projects and initiatives go into place and continue to grow and I hope this trend continues.
What made you decide to pursue being an officer of your organization?
I started out as a member due to being the STEM LLC RA and in that time I was running the peer mentoring program with close help from Dr. Bower and I realized how much of an impact I could have. So when the time came for our current chair to graduate I jumped at the opportunity.
Tell us more about your student organization and why USI students should get involved with it!
SAB is an amazing organization that is filled with leadership possibilities and is a great way to leave your mark on such an amazing and growing campus.
Where do you see yourself in ten years?
A successful Optometrist practicing somewhere, hopefully with a family on the way.