Winter Carnival has been something that I have looked forward to for the past several years. While still in high school, I would come up every year to visit my brother to see the snow statues and see all that was going on. When I was a first year, I could not wait to work on the statue when spring (better known as “winter”) semester began. I eagerly participated in all of the events that I could and enjoyed every moment of my first true Winter Carnival. This year, when I was selected to run as Winter Carnival Queen 2014, representing Army ROTC, I could not be more excited. Winter Carnival has been a tradition since 1922 and I am honored to be a part of it.

Coming to Michigan Tech was something that I had planned since I was five years old. I was in the Upper Peninsula for the first time and we were driving through Houghton when my dad pointed to the Michigan Tech campus and said, “This is where I went to college.” Being the typical Daddy’s Girl, I told my dad that I was going to go to school here. Little did I know at the time that I would actually be a first year on campus during the fall of 2012. When I was applying to Michigan Tech, I had long since forgotten about that moment in the car during the summer of 1999; instead, I saw myself applying to a school that had a beautiful campus and great opportunities for success in its electrical engineering department. Not only was it an excellent college, the surrounding area held amply opportunity for adventures, including skiing, hiking, snowmobiling, and exploring the Keweenaw’s rich history.

As the representative of Army ROTC, one could guess that much of my time around campus involves ROTC. As a young child, I told people that I wanted to serve in the military; however, I was always told that I could not, as I had asthma as a child. I thought my dream was crushed; however, I drove myself to fight back and overcome my challenges. After much hard work to get into shape and the miracle of growing out of it, I received my medical waiver and contracted with ROTC during my first year. Something that I had been told that I could not accomplish, I had finally overcome. I learned that perseverance and determination can lead one to accomplish their dreams. I have been on the Ranger Challenge team for two years running. I have also been a member of the drill team and color guard, presenting the Colors at several football games this fall. As an MSII, I have started to take small leadership roles and have worked to mentor the younger cadets in order to prepare myself and others for the years to come. This fall, I was also assistant S4, which deals with the supply and making sure that all cadets have the necessary gear for the training which they will be completing. This coming summer, I will also be traveling to Benin with CULP for a cultural immersion and understanding opportunity. Not only has ROTC provided me with many lessons and developed my leadership style; it has also been the source of many lifelong friends. The bonds and loyalties that are formed in ROTC are unlike any I could have ever imagined.

As a second year electrical engineering student, I am the third electrical engineer in my family. Both my father and brother have also gone through the MTU EE department. My inspiration to become an electrical engineer did not lie with the fact that my family is full of them; instead, it was the opportunity to work with prosthetics. Since I was twelve, I have dreamed of working with the controls, whether it be making a prosthetic hand work even more like a real one or how the body interacts with actual prosthesis. I grew up watching and reading any program or article that I came across involving them. Not only am I majoring in EE, but I am also earning an International French minor after studying abroad in Pau, France, last summer.

It seems like all of my time is taken up by ROTC and my academics; however, I have found the time to do other things around campus. I participate in hall activities as often as I can, including Safe House and weekly Brownie Nights. This winter, I will be playing broomball and skiing as much as I can. Late night snowshoeing adventures and searching for waterfalls have been my entertainment on weekends. If I am not running, hiking through the Tech trails or hanging out in Houghton with my friends, one can find me curled up with a good book or watching a movie with my hall mates. Most often, my boyfriend, Spencer, can be accused of being my partner in crime. This semester, I am excited to be adding Winter Carnival Queen events to my schedule and would like to thank Army ROTC for choosing me to represent them. Welcome, Winter Carnival 2014!