Courtney Ann Freestone
Bachelor of Science, Microbiology
Briefly tell us about yourself (e.g. hometown, family, hobbies, favorite BYU courses, intended profession)
I grew up in West Jordan, Utah with my parents and two brothers, where I gained a love for dancing, sewing, playing the piano, roller skating, and watching science documentaries. At BYU, I discovered a love for learning about diseases and public health in classes like Infection & Immunity, Virology, and Women's Heath, while I cultivated my love for music by taking organ and tap dancing classes. I've loved working in research labs on campus and as a Chemistry TA, which is a big reason why I want to attend a graduate program that will allow me to do disease research and teach at a university level. I'm passionate about women's issues and hope to do research specifically on diseases that disproportionately affect women, to help solve some of the important but understudied health issues worldwide.
Who were your greatest supporters while earning this degree?
My greatest supports while at BYU were definitely my parents, who give great advice and helped me know from the time I was a kid that I could do whatever I set my mind to. I'm also grateful for my professors, classmates, roommates, therapists, coworkers, and other friends over the years who have helped me grow, learn to be myself, and reach more of my potential. I couldn't have done it alone!
What advice do you have for incoming freshmen at BYU?
Try to learn that it's okay to be imperfect! When I stopped obsessing over my grades and focused on the things I was learning both inside and outside of class, I began to enjoy my college experience more and ended up doing better in my classes because I was kinder to myself. You don't have to do everything; find what you love and work towards ways to use those passions to do good in the world now and in the future.
How has your experience at BYU prepared you for the rest of your life?
My experience at BYU helped me figure out what goals I wanted to set and gave me the tools to reach them. I'm forever thankful for the knowledge from professors, the practical experience from labs, the increased empathy from interactions with classmates and friends, and the spiritual growth from study and life experiences that I gained while at BYU. All these things will (hopefully) help me continue to grow, stretch, and succeed in my goals in the future.