Grace Terry, a 2020 graduate of Mercer University‘s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, earned a Bachelor of Science in biochemistry and molecular biology and a Bachelor of Arts in communication studies.

What are your plans after graduation?

I am moving to New York City to pursue my Ph.D. in biochemistry at the City University of New York.

Who was your favorite professor and why?

Dr. Amy Wiles. I took her my first semester at Mercer for Genetics, then again for Biochemistry I and then my last semester for Bioinformatics. I really appreciated her teaching style and how she shares her passion for science with her students. Bioinformatics was a class that definitely challenged me and several of my peers, but she urged us to see the challenge as an opportunity for growth, not a roadblock. Also, during the transition to online classes, she went above and beyond to not only check in with our progress in her class but often shared resources for ways to deal with the unprecedented times both as a student and as a person and made it known that she was always there when we needed help.

What is one of your favorite Mercer memories?

Joining Alpha Delta Pi. It opened up so many opportunities for me — from serving on the Panhellenic Council as director of community service to meeting my best friends to getting to serve our philanthropy (Ronald McDonald House). Joining a sorority led to me living with friends who became family and really made Mercer my home.

What was your favorite class and why?

Biochemistry Capstone Lab. It’s a class taken the spring semester of your senior year, and it pulls techniques from all the classes you take as a biochemistry major and allows you to apply them to an in-lab project. Unfortunately, it was cut short due to the transition to online classes, but it was definitely one of those classes that made me excited about my major and really emphasized what four years of studying was worth by showing real-life applications.

What advice do you have for incoming students?

Get involved early. Because Mercer is small, if you get involved, it shifts from feeling like a school to feeling like home. Because I got involved early, I never had a class without a friendly face, which helps you socially and academically. Also, make sure to utilize all the resources you have, like office hours, tutoring, peers and supplemental instruction. Time management should also be a major priority in college. Plan your week ahead of time with time to study, but also make sure to plan some time for yourself doing something you like, whether that is watching a TV show, hanging out with your friends or going to the gym. Just plan at least one thing a week that you allow yourself to break from school for, that way you are focused and motivated while studying.

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