Maura Dodge ’20

Maura Dodge

Major: Biology

Minors: Chemistry and Religious Studies

Graduate Program: Master of Science in Population Health Research, Boston University

What do you do now?

I am currently enrolled at the Boston University School of Public Health pursuing my Master of Science in Population Health Research with a concentration in Epidemiology. I was introduced to the program through St. Mike’s in my senior year. The Select Scholars agreement that St. Michael’s has fostered with BUSPH streamlined the application and admittance process and I decided it would be a perfect fit for me. I am gaining knowledge in the fundamental practices of epidemiology with a heavy focus on quantitative research methods including data collection, statistical computing and interpretation.

How did your academic experience at Saint Michael’s College help prepare you for your career?

The diverse biology major at St. Mike’s provided me with an excellent framework for understanding the nature of epidemiological studies and instilled in me a passion for understanding the natural world. I was fortunate enough to be taught by a variety of professors, specializing in cell and molecular biology, neuroscience, and ecology, among other specialities; All of which contributed to the well rounded education sought by schools like the BUSPH and many others. In addition to my within-major coursework, computational mathematics and statistics courses allowed me to transition smoothly to a rigorous coursework filled with data management and statistical computing. I feel well prepared for this experience because of the challenging and meaningful coursework that St. Mike’s provided within my major, and within the liberal arts curriculum as a whole.

What is your favorite memory or class from your time studying at St. Mike’s?

I have had some very memorable moments in the classrooms at St. Mike’s but by far my most enjoyable classes were Developmental Biology with Professor Ruth Fabian-Fine, senior seminar with Professor Adam Weaver, and Ecosystem Ecology with Professor Peter Hope. In all cases, the approachable nature of the professors coupled with their passion for the subject matter, along with camaraderie with classmates provided many moments of laughter, challenging discussions, and eye-opening realism in between the moments of curriculum learning.

Do you have any advice for incoming or current students?

Among some of the best advice that I received from the SMC community that I feel is important to pass along is to truly be fearless in the pursuit of your dreams. You are capable of accomplishing even the biggest goals and there is no set timeline to follow. Things happen more easily when you remember to ask for help!