An Interview with the Seldon Sisters
Casey and Crystal Seldon are both biology majors and proud members of the Georgia State Honors College. A junior and senior respectively, this dynamic duo have worked hard both together and separately during their time here, allowing them to excel in both their academics and extra-curricular activities. They are currently roommates in the Honors Living Learning Community and have each valued the experience of going to school together. Read on to learn about the different ways Crystal and Casey are living out the college experience.
What are you involved in at Georgia State and in the community?
Casey: I try to stay involved wherever I can. I’m an Honors College Ambassador, an officer with TriBeta Biological Honors Society, a research assistant in Dr. Eric Gilbert’s laboratory, and a volunteer at Atlanta Medical Center in the Emergency room. I have also served as a CLAWS mentor and a Fostering Our Community’s Understanding of Science (FOCUS) intern where I was assigned to facilitate the teaching of science and math at Charles E. Gideon Elementary School.
Crystal: I am a member of the American Medical Student Association, American Physician Scientist Association, Tri-Beta Biological Honors Society, and the Undergraduate STEM Research Society. I have also served as a CLAWS mentor with Casey, an Honors College Ambassador, and STEM tutor. I also do my best to give back to the Atlanta community. I am a volunteer at Grady Memorial Hospital in the Radiation- Oncology Department. I have been doing this for 3 years. I am also a triage nurse at the Healing Bridge Clinic in Peachtree City, Georgia. It is a free clinic that takes patients without healthcare insurance or low incomes. I love it!
What are you researching? Have you presented at any conferences?
Casey: As I said before, I work with Dr. Gilbert. I study biofilms and their antibiotic resistance. I’ve had the opportunity to present my research at several conferences and symposiums all over the country. I’ve been to Tennessee, all over Georgia, and Chicago.
Crystal: I work as a research assistant in the lab of Dr. Walthall and a clinical research assistant in the lab of Dr. Jerome Landry at Emory School of Medicine. I have presented my research many times as well. Casey and I traveled to Chicago together but I’ve also presented at many major universities across Georgia. It’s always an amazing experience.
What’s the best Honors class you’ve taken and why?
Casey: The Honors colloquium that I am taking this semester is by far my favorite class. This class focuses on service learning and civic engagement. I’ve volunteered regularly since high school, but this class makes you reflect on the service that you provide and really humbles you. It’s only a few weeks into the semester, and I am learning what it means to provide a meaningful service to a diverse group of citizens, from homeless men that want tutoring to obtain a GED to young girls that are searching for a role model to help them gain a little confidence and inspire them to succeed.
Crystal: My favorite Honors class so far was Honors Animal Biology with Dr. Normandin. Our honors project consisted of a research paper on an animal we chose to observe at the zoo. I’d never been to the zoo before, and I had a really great time doing the paper. It was nice to learn something that wasn’t considered “pre-med” and to expand my scientific knowledge even further.
Why did you choose Georgia State?
Casey: My dad loves to remind me that I turned down a Dean’s scholarship to come to Georgia State. In all honesty, I fell in love with the campus and STEM programs because of my sister. When I was in high school and she was in her freshman year, I would come to visit her and with each visit I became more and more convinced by the things I saw.
Crystal: We’re from a small town and I wanted to move to the city to experience a different environment. I toured the Honors College as a senior in high school for a scholarship and I fell in love with the school. Everyone was friendly and really excited about us. I felt like I would receive a lot of support and help at Georgia State, so I decided to attend.
What are your plans after graduation?
Casey: I have a few ideas of what I would like to do after graduation, but my most immediate plan is to attend medical school.
Crystal: I’m very excited to say that I will be attending Morehouse School of Medicine this fall! I plan to specialize in Internal Medicine after graduation.
What’s the best thing about going to school together?
Casey: The biggest benefit of going to school with Crystal is that I’ve never had to buy books for my major courses. I saved a ton of money. But seriously, I have my best friend here with me to guide me on not only what classes to take and to study with but to be there for me while we eat brownies and watch movies all night. However, I believe she needs me more; she would surely starve if I wasn’t around to cook for her.
Crystal: Casey is absolutely right—the biggest benefit is that I don’t have to cook anything. I am a horrible cook so eating something edible every night is great.
What makes the Honors College special?
Casey: The Honors College is special because the staff truly cares about its students. The college is full of elite students from diverse backgrounds, ethnicities, and majors. If it were not for my affiliation with Honors I wouldn’t be who I am today.
Crystal: The Honors College is honestly my family away from home. I know that if I need anything, someone here will help me achieve it if I just open that door. I have received so many opportunities and benefits from being a part of this organization. My journey through undergrad would not have been as enjoyable/smooth without the Honors College.