Class of 2022 Student Spotlight: Isabelle Uong

Isabelle Uong, a student at the College of the Holy Cross, poses at the base of granite stairs in a white dress.

A biology major, Isabelle will work as an ophthalmic technician in preparation of continuing her education in optometry school

Name: Isabelle Uong

Hometown: Rockland, Mass.

Major: Biology and Health Professions Advising

Campus Activities: McAlister Research Lab; Advocating Student Interest in Asia

Please share a turning point or significant memory from your time at Holy Cross.

Although I have made numerous memories with friends and classmates during my time at Holy Cross, one of the most significant was my honors thesis presentation in Rehm Library during the Academic Conference. I was proud to share the research work that I started in Maine in 2021 with Justin S. McAlister, associate professor of biology, and was excited and grateful to present to my peers, friends, and faculty. The College Honors Program and the Weiss Summer Research Program offered me the opportunity to explore academic fields I may not have been able to or interested in otherwise.

Name two or three items/lessons from Holy Cross that you’ll take with you after leaving Mount St. James.

One of the greatest lessons I’ve learned at Holy Cross is to prioritize the relationships in my life. Coming back to campus after the pandemic, I realized how important the people I was interacting with were to me and my college experience. A relevant, but separate, lesson I learned is to prioritize the relationship I have with myself. Although Holy Cross is a challenging school and it is easy to overwhelm yourself with academics and other responsibilities, I graduate with greater confidence in my ability to emotionally and physically take care of myself. Another lesson I have learned is to not be afraid to ask for help or to use available resources. In order to grow, whether academically or personally, I have learned it is important to take risks. Holy Cross pushes students to challenge ourselves to develop into better students and people overall.

What’s next?

Upon graduation, I plan to work as an ophthalmic technician in the Boston area. I anticipate working in this position for a year while preparing for optometry school.