COSAM Senior from New Mexico Splits Time between Track and Field and Research at Auburn
College of Sciences and Mathematics (COSAM) senior Kevin Wyss, a native of Albuquerque, New Mexico, is far from home, but has found a second family at Auburn University.
The senior majoring in chemistry was recruited from New Mexico to Auburn to join the Track & Field team. He also works part-time in the COSAM Department of Student Services.
“The track team and the Student Services department and all the friends I have made in COSAM have become like family,” Kevin said. “That helps a lot when you’re far from home.”
Kevin is a Track & Field distance runner. He runs cross country in the fall and indoor and outdoor track in the spring. He said he enjoys being a part of a team and competing at a high level.
“Every year … every month, even, I’m in the best shape of my life,” he said. “I run faster than I ever have before.”
While a COSAM student, Kevin has realized his passion for research. He has performed research with Chemistry and Biochemistry Associate Professor Dr. Anne Gorden for almost three years and received an undergraduate research fellowship from Auburn University.
“I think that really helped me figure out that this is what I may want to do for a career,” Kevin said about research. “I can see myself doing this 40 hours a week in graduate school and after graduate school.”
Kevin also serves as treasurer of the Auburn Chemistry Society, and is a supplemental chemistry instructor, which has led him to learn that he enjoys teaching as well.
“I enjoy teaching and helping them understand and showing them chemistry is cool,” Kevin said.
After graduation in May, Kevin plans to attend grad school to pursue his Ph.D. and his top school choices include Johns Hopkins and the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill.
He said UNC is at the top of the list because he enjoys living in the South.
“I really like the South,” he said. “I like the culture, the food, and definitely the weather.”
He added that attending school at Auburn has also grown his love for football.
Kevin said the part of being a COSAM student he enjoys the most is the opportunities in academia and research.
“You sometimes have to dig a little for yourself, but opportunities just kind of come to you in COSAM,” he said.