Region VIII Students

February Updates for Region VIII

For the February updates, I am excited to share news about some of our amazing students in Region VIII. We all know just how important these students are to the future of our profession! Did you know that across our 5 states in Region VIII we have 138 student members in ASCLS? Did you know that the ASCLS Student Forum Chair and Student Director on the ASCLS Board of Directors is a member of ASCLS-MT? Here are your state Student Forum Representatives, Region VIII Student Forum Representative and ASCLS Student Forum Chair:

Maria Rodriguez, ASCLS-Montana; ASCLS Student Forum Chair and Student Director on the ASCLS Board of Directors:

  • Why did you join ASCLS? When did you join?

Back in 2015, I went to my University’s career fair, and I was really disappointed when no one knew what a Medical technologist does. That night I went online looking for networking and career opportunities. On my search I found ASCLS, and I instantly sign up to be a member.

  • What university did you attend, what was(were) your major(s), what year did you graduate?

I graduated from Montana State University in May 2017 with a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology, a minor in genetics and a Leadership fellowship. I am currently doing my clinical rotations at Bozeman Deaconess Hospital.

  • Where are you from?

I was born and raised in Venezuela, but I have been living in the States for the past 5 years. I haven’t get used to the cold weather though.

  • What is your favorite part/department of the lab?

My one true love is Microbiology, especially parasitology. But sometimes I flirt with chemistry and toxicology.

  • What is an interesting fact about you?

I lived on an island (Margarita island) for 16 years, but I never learn how to swim. Also, I really enjoy doing research. In fact, I have been working in an Immunotoxicology lab for the past 2 years studying how heavy metal exposure affects epigenetics modifications.


Samantha Buck, ASCLS-Colorado; Region VIII Student Forum Representative and Colorado Student Forum Representative:

  • Why did you join ASCLS? When did you join?

I joined ACSLS in January 2017 because our program made us and because I love being a part of professional organizations, going to conferences, and being able to network.

  • What university did you attend, what was(were) your major(s), what year did you graduate?

I graduated from Colorado State University in December 2014 with a B.S. in Biochemistry & Microbiology and a minor in Molecular Biology. I graduated from the University of Newcastle in Australia December 2018 with my Masters in Clinical Epidemiology.

  • Where are you from?

I was born and raised in Colorado, but half of my family lives in Australia. I am a dual citizen with the USA and Australia.

  • What is your favorite part/department of the lab?

I love Microbiology and Blood Bank!

  • What is an interesting fact about you?

I have been a dancer for 22 years and I almost became a professional ballet dancer in NYC (I was accepted into Joffrey Ballet); however, medical issues thwarted that dream. I am certified to teach various classes such as dance (ballet, jazz, etc.), dance fitness, barre fitness, and pole fitness.


Katelyn Hoff, ASCLS-Wyoming; Wyoming Student Forum Representative:

  • Why did you join ASCLS? When did you join?

I joined ASCLS as an MLT student in the Fall of 2016. I joined ASCLS because I really enjoyed the fall meeting and all of the lectures that were given that day.

  • What university did you attend, what was(were) your major(s), what year did you graduate?

I attended Colorado State University where I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Microbiology in 2015, Casper College where I graduated with an associate’s degree in Medical Laboratory Technician in 2016, and I am a current student at the University of Wyoming where I will graduate in May with a bachelor’s degree in Medical Laboratory Science.

  • Where are you from?

I am originally from Windsor, CO, but I live in Douglas, WY now.

  • What is your favorite part/department of the lab?

My favorite departments in the lab are microbiology and hematology.

  • What is an interesting fact about you?

An interesting fact about myself is I am a Colorado Native but I do not ski or snowboard.


Christian Keech, ASCLS-Idaho; Idaho Student Forum Representative:

  • Why did you join ASCLS? When did you join?

I joined ASCLS so that I could be more involved with my career and also for all of the great leadership and education benefits it has to offer. I joined in November 2017.

  • What university did you attend, what was(were) your major(s), what year did you graduate?

I am currently attending Idaho State University, planning to graduate in August 2018 with an HBS in Medical Lab Science.

  • Where are you from?

Born and raised in Boise, Idaho.

  • What is your favorite part/department of the lab?

I really enjoy hematology and molecular applications.

  • What is an interesting fact about you?

I am the oldest of 10 siblings (a good mix of step and half siblings).


Lauren Downer, ASCLS-Idaho; Idaho Student Forum Representative:

  • Why did you join ASCLS? When did you join?

I joined ASCLS because it was a requirement of our program. Also, my grandmother was an active member and served as an Idaho President in the past. She has really enjoyed being a part of ASCLS and thinks it is a great organization, so I wanted to have a similar experience.

  • What university did you attend, what was(were) your major(s), what year did you graduate?

I graduated from The College of Idaho in 2017. I majored in Health Sciences and now I am attending Idaho State University.

  • Where are you from?

I am from Idaho and have lived there my entire life.

  • What is your favorite part/department of the lab?

So far, I have enjoyed learning about Blood Bank the most.

  • What is an interesting fact about you?

I was on my college’s ski racing team.


Jordan Graham-Ax, ASCLS-Idaho; Idaho Student Forum Representative:

  • Why did you join ASCLS? When did you join?

I joined ASCLS after a presentation on campus. I joined because it is important to remain informed about your profession and have an outlet that gives access to other professionals.

  • What university did you attend, what was(were) your major(s), what year did you graduate?

I received a B.S. in Health Science from Boise State University, I also minored in Biology. I was accepted into the MLS program at Idaho State University and will graduate in May 2018.

  • Where are you from?

I am from Boise, Idaho.

  • What is your favorite part/department of the lab?

Academically, chemistry is the most challenging for me, but in the lab it is actually my favorite. I also enjoy blood banking quite a bit.

  • What is an interesting fact about you?

I was born with no sense of smell. It can make things interesting, but I don’t actually find it to be a big deal at all. People ask me all the time if I can still taste food. I most definitely still LOVE food, but I would imagine it tastes different for me than it does for people who can smell. I wouldn’t know.


Jessica Stellingwerf, ASCLS-Montana; Montana Student Forum Representative:

  • Why did you join ASCLS? When did you join?

I joined ASCLS on 9/21/2015. I have worked at the Billings Clinic for about 6.5 years. When I decided to go back to school to become a Med Tech in the fall of 2015, a lot of coworkers encouraged me to join and meet like-minded people. I have met so many wonderful people with similar interests, and I’m so thankful I did join. I also enjoy staying up to date on the questions people have on the forums and what is going on with our career on a national level.

  • What university did you attend, what was(were) your major(s), what year did you graduate?

I am currently attending Montana State University Billings and am majoring in Biology with an emphasis in Clinical Laboratory Science. I will graduate in May 2019.

  • Where are you from?

I am from Billings, Montana. I love it here! We are so close to all of the beautiful amenities that Montana has to offer and we are also the largest city in Montana so there is always something to do.

  • What is your favorite part/department of the lab?

I really enjoy Microbiology. I love plating things and watching them grow. It’s like watching my art come to life.

  • What is an interesting fact about you?

I’m an old soul. I hate leaving the house. When I was a kid I would read books, knit, crochet, and cross stich. I’m pretty sure I watched some Danielle Steel movies on the Hallmark Channel too. Not much has changed except I watch better chick flicks now 😉


Congratulations to all of these outstanding students! You are an inspiration to us and we are thrilled to get to know you. You are our up and coming leaders in the profession and in ASCLS! I hope to see each of you at the spring meetings in April and May and to meet all of your fellow students at these meetings. Thank you for your commitment and your enthusiasm!

 

I encourage all members in Region VIII to reach out to our student leaders and get to know them. Let’s celebrate all of our students at our state meetings and make sure they have the tools necessary to find success in all they do. After all, they are our future and we are going to be their patients one day!

 

Holly Weinberg, Region VIII Director

State Presidents:

Leave a Reply