Alumni News

December 1, 2020 at 2:01 pm

2020 Graduate | Groene Sets Her Sights on Career in Genetic Counseling

Madison Groene, portrait

Madison Groene

Madison Groene says her college career isn’t defined by where she started. It’s all about where she’s going.

And her next step is graduating from Ohio University in December, then on to a future she never envisioned when she was a high school student choosing a college major.

She’s still majoring in Biological Sciences, but it’s the minor in Psychology—and an inspirational professor—that helped change her career trajectory from pre-med to genetic counseling.

“I think the hardest hill that I have had to climb at OHIO was figuring out what I wanted to do for a career. When I came to OHIO I was sure that I wanted to become a doctor, but throughout my freshman year, I had doubts about whether this was the right path for me,” she says.

“These doubts culminated the beginning of my sophomore year, when I officially ‘declared’ that I was no longer pre-med. But this declaration was just the beginning because for so long I had used the title of pre-med to define myself. I no longer new what my future goals where and it scared me. So, I began a journey of career jumping. I was not comfortable admitting that I did not know what was next, so I kept picking a new future plan, hoping one would stick. It was not until I learned to define myself outside of my career, that I was able to be comfortable in choosing a path forward.”

Q: What are your next steps/future plans?

I am currently applying to master’s in genetic counseling programs, so hopefully grad school is in my future. However, for my “gap” semester, I am currently in the process of applying to jobs as a genetic counseling assistant.

Q: Who were your favorite professors and how did they make an impact on your life? 

One of my favorite professors is Dr. Michael Grant. I took intro to psychology with him freshman year, and it was through hearing about his experiences as a behavior geneticist that set me on the path that eventually lead me to genetic counseling.

Q: What was your ah-ha moment at OHIO—that point where you said to yourself, “I’ve got this!”?

I do not know if I could pinpoint one point, I think rather it is has been a culmination of lots of little moments. Every semester presents new challenges, and there are times where it can feel like I have everything under control, and then the next week you’re questioning everything again. But I think it has been those hard weeks, where there does not seem to be enough time, and no matter what you do it won’t be enough that have helped me realize that I do have this. Because I have made it through those weeks and moments, and thus I know that I can again in the future.

Q: What are your favorite OHIO memories?

Some of my favorite moments at OHIO include the late-night study sessions I have had with friends over the years. Don’t get me wrong; these were often times filled with stress and nerves, but there were also a lot of laughs and deepened friendships that happened through these.

Q: What’s the one thing you would tell a new OHIO student not to miss?

One thing I would say not to miss at OHIO is going up to the Ridges. I actually did not make it up there until this semester, but now I wish I had gone up there more often. It is a beautiful hike, and you’re able to see (almost) the town from up there.

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