shannon corcoran wasn’t ready to give up dancing. but the self-proclaimed math nerd also wanted to follow a rigorous academic path.
a collegiate dance team and a caring professor helped her meld her love of dancing and numbers.
i’ve been dancing since i was 3, and i wasn’t ready to give it up when i came to college. so i convinced my mom to let me fly down for clemson rally cats tryouts. it was such an intense — and intimidating — three-day process with multiple rounds of performances and cuts. i was so excited when i saw my name in the list of girls who had made the team.
one of my favorite clemson professors is dr. mark cawood. he gave me the guidance i needed coming into clemson, which helped set me up for success as a math major and an honors college student. he’s still my adviser and has been such an inspiring and caring mentor.calhoun honors college » opens new window
my first couple weeks on campus were crazy. i arrived early for rally cats training, classes started, i decided to go through sorority recruitment, and then went to my first college football game ever — on the sidelines dancing as a rally cat. it was insane. after that game, i just lay on the floor of my mccabe hall room and cried (happy tears!). i had found where i belonged.
since i’m in a year-round sport, i couldn’t take off an entire semester to study abroad. but i saw a flyer for a maymester class in new zealand and australia and knew that was perfect. it was a faculty-led program called humans and the environment. we gathered data while snorkeling in the great barrier reef. i planted trees on the beaches of new zealand and volunteered at elementary schools. it was amazing.study abroad » opens new window
dr. cawood introduced me to the actuarial career path, and this past summer, i interned in the insurance and actuarial advisory services practice at ernst & young in new york city. coming from a small town in new hampshire, i never dreamed this could be my life.
our academic and extracurricular opportunities will allow you to find the perfect way to combine your interests — no matter how varied they might seem.