“I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to participate in ACE in India because it will allow me to see other areas of the world, appreciate other cultures or ways of life, and get to know other Duke/Stanford student-athletes. Through this experience, I hope to leave a positive impact on the lives of others and appreciate different perspectives as I question my beliefs.”
Kate’s past experiences with service include participating in project BUILD, a pre-orientation first-year program aiming to develop relationships through community service in Durham. Kate also participated in the first-year Neuroscience and Law Focus Program, connecting with other Focus students and meeting with professors at weekly dinners for further discussion. Kate is currently a member of CAPE, a program for female student- athletes at Duke who are interested in the premedical field. This summer, she plans to continue volunteering at the Boys and Girls Club of Pasadena by tutoring for summer school programs and playing sports with children.
Kate is a junior at Duke and competes in the heptathlon for the Women’s Track and Field team. She is currently studying Biology and Cultural Anthropology, and is dedicated to serving those in need. She enjoys going on adventures, playing with children, and learning about other cultures. Her participation in ACE in India solidified her goal of becoming a doctor in order to provide medical care to underprivileged communities in the United States. Traveling to India allowed her to see the importance of education and health from an outside perspective and has influenced her commitment to making health care more available and culturally inclusive. To follow this passion back on campus, she is a part of Help Desk, which is a Bass Connections Team centered around the social determinants of US health disparities and works to connect members in the community to health resources. Kate is also a member of CAPE—a premedical program for female athletes at Duke—and spent her summer shadowing doctors at the Duke Hospital. The relationships and memories created with fellow Duke and Stanford athletes along with the children in Jasola, New Delhi, are experiences that Kate will never forget. As an ACE Ambassador, she is committed to helping current and future ACE participants get the most out of their experience abroad through cultural and ethical preparation.
Want to hear more about Kate’s ACE experience? Contact Kate.
Dear Future #ACEathletes,
- Best advice for learning about ACE: Definitely follow your interests! Take some time to read about each program and find a program whose mission statement matches your passions. Attending an info session is a great way to get started, but asking an ACE ambassador is the best way to find out which one is right for you, as long as it fits into your schedule.
- Best advice for applying for ACE: It is easier to write an application for each team if you pick two that fit your passions. It is good to show how your prior experiences have prepared you for this opportunity, however, your level of interest in a specific program is the key to writing a strong application. I had multiple people read over my application for revisions and to make sure it was true to who I am.
- Best advice for getting started at your program: My first couple days were packed! Even the smallest activities, from putting on a kurta in the morning to bargaining for a souvenir at the local market, can be very different. My advice for getting started is to dive in head first! The best way to experience a new place is to get involved and have fun with it.
- Tips for getting to know your community: One tip for getting to know your community is to ask a lot of questions and to follow what those around you are doing. Be respectful of cultural norms and be observant of how community members act in certain situations before taking part. At the same time, let your personality show and don’t be afraid to share your own stories and culture with others! They are just as curious about you as you are about them.
- Tips for training: While in India, I enjoyed taking yoga classes in the mornings before going to our NGO, and later in the evenings I would go out to the local park for my running workouts. It was really fun (and way easier) to exercise with other Duke and Stanford student-athletes. If you are experiencing jet lag or are too tired from your day, it’s ok to take a day for yourself.
- Tips for bringing ACE back to your team: I came back from ACE with a new appreciation for my ability to pursue my passion of being a female athlete, as well as a general appreciation for all the amazing opportunities offered at Duke. I have mainly shared my experiences with my friends and teammates one on one because it is sometimes difficult to express how profound my experience was in a larger group setting. As the track season approaches, I plan to help the team engage in local service activities and get to know each other better while helping the community.
- Reasons for staying involved in ACE: I want to stay involved in ACE because it has had such a great impact on my life and I want to help others take advantage of this amazing opportunity. Not only has it helped me understand and reevaluate my goals, but it has also helped me appreciate what I have and the importance of staying involved in your own community.