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IU Northwest News

Celebrating the Class of 2016


Three biology grads, all bound for professional schools, share similar paths to success

Tuesday May 03, 2016


Meet Taylor Cable, Miranda Cornejo and Janelle Golly, three Indiana University Northwest Class of 2016 graduates who also wear the titles of future doctor, dentist and physical therapist.

The Department of Biology ought to start boasting about these three young women who are tops in their class and the pride of the department. Not only are all three here on full academic scholarships, but all are the first in their families to earn a four-year degree, and all three are bound for professional schools.

IU Northwest celebrates their achievements this graduation season.

Taylor Cable
Class of 2016, B.S., Biology

When Taylor Cable was in first grade, she told her mom that she loved school and vowed to never miss a day. That was also the year she announced that she wanted to be a doctor when she grew up.

She never did miss a day, the 22-year-old Cable confirms, though her mom often strongly suggested she take an occasional break from studying. After graduating from Portage High School fourth in her class of some 600 students, Cable was granted a full tuition scholarship to attend IU Northwest.

Cable kept up that pace in college. In fact, Spencer Cortwright, biology department chair, identified Cable as being “in our top one percent all-time biology students in terms of intelligence.” At the Honors Tea for the College of Arts and Sciences, Cable was recognized with the department’s top honor, the Biology Academic Excellence Award.

Though she applied to IU School of Medicine, she has not yet received an acceptance letter. However the reason is likely because of a late application and a lack of job shadowing experiences, not lack of aptitude or achievement, Cortwright says.

Immediately after graduation, Cable will participate in a job shadowing program that will have her rotating through different specialties every day for two months. She hopes to also work as a scribe in a local hospital, a great experience for aspiring medical students.

Cable said that what she appreciates most about her IU Northwest education is the rigor of the program. Many students switch their majors after the first semester because of the difficulty of the program, she said, and she was afraid she might be among them.

“I appreciate that the classes were very hard,” she said, “because it definitely prepared me for going to medical school.”

Janelle Golly
Class of 2016, B.A., Biology

A track, cross country and basketball athlete throughout high school, Janelle Golly suffered her fair share of injuries. In order to get back into her game, she spent hours working with physical therapists, which is how she first learned about the career and became increasingly interested in the field.

Golly, 23, of Valparaiso, didn’t think twice about choosing IU Northwest to begin her journey to become a physical therapist. Because of her academic achievement in high school, she was granted a full tuition scholarship.

“I also knew that class sizes were smaller so I wouldn’t be just another number or name on a roster,” Golly said. “I would be a person that they would get to know. IU Northwest was the best decision I ever made.”

The personal attention she received and the relationships she formed with both students and professors helped her excel academically.

Though her sister earned an associate’s degree to become a physical therapy assistant, Golly is the first in her family to earn a four-year degree, and this is only the first milestone. In the fall, she will begin the prestigious Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Northwestern University in downtown Chicago.

Golly currently works as a rehabilitation technician at Athletico, an outpatient orthopedic center in Valparaiso. She was able to use the hours she works there as the observation hours she needed for her Northwestern University application. Cortwright said that being accepted into this program is quite an honor for an IU Northwest student, as Northwestern consistently achieves a national top-20 status each year.

Miranda Cornejo
Class of 2016, B.S., Biology

When Miranda Cornejo was nine, she accompanied her dad on “Take Your Daughter to Work Day.” He probably didn’t expect that showing her around the dental equipment that he worked on would lead to an interest in becoming a dentist.

That’s exactly where the now 22-year-old graduate of Hanover Central High School is headed. On July 5, she’ll begin her dental education at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis (IUPUI). She is the first in her family to earn a four-year degree let alone go on to a professional school, both on generous scholarships. Her academic achievement in high school earned her full tuition at IU Northwest and her performance at IU Northwest resulted in $80,000 toward her four-year dental education, a rarity in professional schools.

Her easy decision to attend IU Northwest, Cornejo said, because of the scholarship and because her parents weren’t paying for the rest of the school fees, turned out to be the “best decision of my life.”

“IU Northwest has given me a lot of opportunities that I don’t think I would get anywhere else,” Cornejo said.

Among the examples, she said, were the opportunity research three different subjects with three different professors, the opportunity to organize the Indiana Latino Leadership Conference and the easy access to professors who got to know her personally and were happy to write recommendation letters for her dental school application.

Scoring high on her dental admission test was easy, Cornejo said, because she knew the material — a result of the rigorous program and high expectations by the professors.

“I personally think our professor are hard on us in a good way,” she said. “They want us to do better. Our school has high expectations because it is going to help us in the long run.” 

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