Pipeline program: VCU Acceleration (2009)
Year in school: Second year pharmacy student in the VCU School of Pharmacy
High school/hometown: Battlefield High School, Gainesville, VA
Interview Date: Winter 2014
Self-described as a very energetic child, one of Kalyann Kauv’s earliest memories of healthcare was attending her mother’s pregnancy ultrasound. The experience was remarkable to Kauv because at the age of 3 she found something that created a sense of stillness and attentiveness in her. Ever since then, Kauv has been interested in various aspects of human health and science.
During high school Kauv found the college search and application process frustrating, especially as a first-generation college student.
“[M]y senior year in high school, I was feeling very lost about which college was best for me… my family expected me to know the answers, even though I was just as clueless!”
Working with her school counselor, Kauv learned about VCU Acceleration and let her passion be her guide. When looking at schools, Kauv wanted to make sure that she wasn’t just another student “in a sea of thousands,” and felt that Acceleration offered individualized growth.
“I felt like the program would be there for me to make the transition to college easier, even if other parts of my life weren’t. It seemed like a program where I could figure out what I needed to do in order to have a successful undergraduate and professional career.”
Kauv credits the staff with being helpful in providing resources, knowledgeable about the process of applying to competitive health programs, and dedicated to providing support for their students. According to Kauv, Acceleration was instrumental in discovering career options in pharmacy, understanding the process of applying to professional school and helping her stay focused. Within Acceleration, Kauv made the most of her experience and earned the program’s Researcher Award and Student of the Year Award. Kauv also reconnected with Acceleration as a Teaching Assistant in 2013.
Now in her second year in the VCU School of Pharmacy, Kauv is considering ambulatory care where pharmacists work more closely with patients on a one-on-one basis and is interested in how this can be applied to the various health sectors within the government. When reflecting on her Acceleration experience, Kauv likes to remind future applicants to make the most of their time by putting in the work and effort to achieve the results they wish to see.
“Be attentive, be alert and be engaging. Show the program why they picked you. Don’t just do what is required, surpass their expectations. VCUA has really become a great program not because of what it offers, but because of what amazing and inspiring things that their students have done from their own willpower to help give back to the community.”