Most college students and graduates have heard of double majors, but how about a triple?
Derby resident Sarah Buie is studying three different disciplines at the Wichita State University College of Health Professions with hopes of standing out to future graduate schools and employers.
“Originally, I was going to double major in psychology and health sciences,” she said. “However, once I started taking classes in the public health department, I realized I was also really interested in the management aspect of the program, so I decided to add my third major: health management.”
Buie is technically a senior at WSU because she “took a lot of college classes in high school” but she doesn’t expect to graduate until fall 2022.
Buie was awarded the Gore scholarship, one of the largest in Kansas, as an incoming Shocker in 2019 and was recently announced as a winner of the Sherr scholarship. In total, she has been awarded $68,000 in scholarships at WSU.
Buie’s first semester at WSU was in fall 2019, just one semester before the COVID-19 pandemic broke out.
“Adjusting to online learning during a pandemic was a challenge,” she said.
Dorm life was also a highlight for Buie, who said she misses studying or having game nights with floor mates. With dorms closing in March 2020, Buie said she had to adjust her study habits to a new environment and worked to stay engaged without in-person instruction.
“However, I have amazing professors that have worked hard to adapt our classes to the remote learning environment, and over the past three semesters, I have learned to adapt,” she said.
In fact, Buie said she is starting to enjoy the flexibility of online learning, as it has allowed her to work two part-time jobs while attending college full-time and remaining involved in extracurricular activities.
It’s safe to say Buie is taking every opportunity she can as a college student. But striving to achieve sometimes means being stretched a little thin.
Striking a balance between social, academic and vocational opportunities has been the biggest challenge of her college experience so far, Buie said.
“At times, I spread myself too thin, so I have had to learn to make sure to take time for myself,” she said. “I have also learned that it is okay to turn down some opportunities, so I can better dedicate myself to my top priorities.”
Buie is currently interning at both the Riordan Clinic and the Derby Community Foundation. She started her role as the assistant for events and marketing at DCF in November 2020, performing tasks like soliciting donations, planning events and managing DCF’s social media accounts.
Buie said the main reason she went for the DCF internship was because she wanted to give back to the Derby community. The internship has also offered networking opportunities and fits well within her busy schedule, Buie said.
“One of my favorite projects is filming testimonial videos from grant recipients and board members,” she said. “I enjoy learning how DCF has been able to better the Derby community and networking with different people.”
Buie is still deciding on a future career path, but she feels confident at this point that she will plan to attend grad school. She’s considering master’s programs in business administration, public health and nonprofit leadership.
Buie said her parents are her biggest supporters and she has also appreciated help from WSU faculty during her time at the university.
For high schoolers looking for scholarships and hoping to achieve success in college, Buie has two major pieces of advice: “apply, apply, apply” and don’t be afraid to ask for help.