Julia Morris gets a lot of satisfaction from caring for her two snakes, two lovebirds and three fish. But she's ready to do so much more with her lifelong love of animals.

"If you could have asked the 5-year-old me what I would want to do, I would have said, 'work with animals,'" she says.

Last fall, Morris, 19, moved closer to her longtime goal when she transferred to Kent State from Cuyahoga Community College to major in zoology. She had been attending Tri-C's Western campus in Parma for two semesters, studying to be a veterinary technician while she decided on a major.

"Hopefully, I will work at a zoo with the reptiles and fish," Morris says. "At some point, I may want to open a pet store and breed animals."

Growing up she had a variety of pets such as rabbits and fish, but she's just beginning to stretch her experience into the world of reptiles.

"I'm shy around people, but with my animals, I'm completely different," she says. She loves that the pets depend on her and she focuses on giving the animals "the life that they deserve."

She finds Kent State's Department of Biological Sciences with its zoology program to be the perfect place to pursue her goals. She had visited the university many times when her older sister, a 2015 alumna, was a student here.

Morris knew that if she wanted to major in zoology, none of the other colleges she considered were close enough to her hometown of Brunswick.

For her, Kent State wasn't too big, but was big enough. "I liked that. It was close to home, but far enough away from home – and safe."

Kent State offered plenty of options. "I could do whatever I wanted to do," she says. "I think I have had more opportunity here than I would have at other schools."

I think I have had more opportunity here than I would have at other schools

She found that the transfer process was a breeze. "The experience can be tailored to what each person needs," she says.

Now, as she dives into the prerequisites for her major, Morris is encouraged by the many student success stories she hears. And she has high hopes that one day her story will number among those successes.

Meanwhile, she's confident she has found her niche. "There is no other way I could have done anything else. This is the only thing I will be happy doing," she says.

POSTED: Wednesday, July 14, 2021 01:11 PM
UPDATED: Saturday, May 25, 2024 07:06 PM