COSAM News Articles 2019 September COSAM Senior Preparing for Military Career

COSAM Senior Preparing for Military Career

Published: 09/03/2019

By: Carla Nelson

Auburn University senior Alexis Lugo always knew she was destined for the military. With military parents, Alexis grew up on a military base and loved it. But Alex plans to serve more than her country, she also plans to one day serve the sick as an Army doctor specializing in family medicine.

“Since I was 4 I have wanted to be an Army doctor,” Alexis said. “They wear the same uniform my parents did, so I was never scared of going to the doctor. I always had good experiences with doctors.”

Originally from Ocala, Fla., when deciding where to pursue her degree, Auburn was an obvious choice. Her father grew up in Camp Hill, Ala., and has been an Auburn football fan his entire life.

“We went to a game my sophomore year of high school, and I just fell in love with Auburn,” she said. “When I found out Auburn was one of the top pre-med schools, it just solidified everything.”

Alexis, who is studying biomedical sciences and is part of the honors college, has applied for educational delay in the military. She will commission in May as a second lieutenant and after graduating from medical school will serve as a captain.

She served in the Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (JROTC) in high school and is currently involved in ROTC on Auburn’s campus. This year she is serving as the assistant to the Cadet Battalion Training Officer (S-3) and is in charge of ROTC volunteer opportunities.

During her time as a student in the College of Sciences and Mathematics (COSAM), Alexis has been involved with the Minority Association of Pre-Health Students (MAPS) and also serves as a student ambassador for the COSAM Office of Inclusion, Equity and Diversity (OIED). Alexis’s father is from Puerto Rico, so she also qualified for the OIED Summer Bridge Program the summer before her freshman year. She finished the program in the top three of her class and said it prepared her well for Auburn.

“I really enjoyed it,” she said. “Coming into school I already had 30 friends. They treated us like college students and it got us used to the university environment.”

Alexis said when she first started taking COSAM classes, she was a little intimidated.

“I came from a big high school of 2,600, so I was used to bigger classrooms, but I was a little intimidated when I walked into SCA (Science Center Auditorium) the first time,” she said. “But once you actually get in, it’s not that intimidating. From my experience, I realize that as long as you go to class and you take notes and you’re actively engaged, it’s not that scary. Ultimately, I’m here to get into med school, so I just really tried to focus and then COSAM wasn’t that scary.”

She added that feels her COSAM curriculum has prepared her well for medical school.

“I’ve taken the MCAT (Medical College Admission Test) three times and every time what I’ve studied in class has shown up on the test,” she said. “COSAM definitely prepared me for the MCAT and made everything familiar and not as scary.”


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