First Year Review

As I reflect on my freshman year of college, it is quite apparent that I have grown and matured as an individual through my academic and through other first year experiences. At the beginnings of my interactions with Ohio State, that being my application and acceptance to the university as well as the STEM EE Scholars program, I was completely oblivious to what the future had in store for me. After deciding to commit to attend Ohio State, I felt pressure to take authority over and be more cognizant of my actions. Although I had many strong feelings to take charge of business before the official start of my first year, I honestly handled my responsibilities with little focus or dedication, like skimming important emails. My avoidance of these crucial tasks impacted me greatly after move in day. While interacting with peers and fellow STEM EE scholars during those first few weeks, I struggled and felt consistently uncertain of what was going on around me. Everything happening on campus combined with the start of classes and new things I had to be accountable for, I became extremely overwhelmed. Despite these primary worries of helplessness, my first year at Ohio State within the STEM Scholars Program has aided me in evolving to be more responsible, more outgoing and more open to accept new ideas

It took hard work and perseverance to correct these initial problems and concerns. I had but only one choice: to become liable for my involvements and myself in general. I learned that I needed to take every occasion with a sense of seriousness and prepare myself properly. For communication is probably the most important aspect of responsibility, I grew to pay more attention to important notices and emails and became better at expressing my ideas. Most importantly relative to responsibility, I matured to recognize when I needed help and how to reach out to those who could help me such as my roommates, fellow scholars, advisors, professors and even parents. In my coursework, I had to learn what helped me succeed and how to budget my time. With becoming more responsible, I learned to be more outgoing. I realized that if I wanted to do well and participate, I needed to put myself out there. Reciprocally, the more often I put myself out there, the more confident I felt about myself and my abilities. Another way that I have matured is how I have become able to consider new ideas. In college, especially at such a large school like Ohio State, students are constantly surrounded by others who have different thoughts on life and beliefs. I am now more willing as an individual to listen carefully to others and reconsider what I already believe and agree with.

In conclusion, I have immensely changed for the better. I am now continually conscious of my actions and am more careful about controlling my own life. I have become better at tacking charge and being accountable for my obligations. Through the STEM EE Scholars Program, I have learned what balance means in relation to academics, activities, volunteer work and social events. From my experiences, I have matured and have a confident, dedicated outlook to what I can accomplish in both the near and distant future.

G.O.A.L.S. Discussion: Leadership Development & Service Engagement

In the context of my future career and personal goals, I believe that the Leadership Development and Service Engagement aspects of the University Honors and Scholars G.O.A.L.S. remain most applicable. On a personal level, actions taken as a leader of an organization or group and willingness to serve communities and individuals extremely build a person’s character and diversify their life experiences. Before coming to Ohio State, I involved myself in activities and extracurricular things that combined both of the two facets of the G.O.A.L.S. As for Leadership Development, I worked with other youth at my church to help plan group bonding and service outreach events such as retreats and mission trips. I was also a co-president of an organization at my high school that displayed student artwork and creative writing within an annual, printed booklet. Relating back to the topic of Service Engagement, I regularly partook in a variety of service opportunities such as volunteering at a special needs preschool over the summer or by simply packing up donated canned foods for local food banks. These past experiences have greatly impacted my life and have pushed me to stay active in areas of leadership and service. At Ohio State and during my future career, I hope to engage myself in these ways for they will not only benefit me but will benefit the people around me.

To further my success and involvement, I strive to remain active in clubs and student organizations and give back to the community. A constant goal of mine is to further my leadership skills for when I was young, I struggled with insecurities and shyness around others. As I have matured, I have become more confident and inspired to take on leadership roles. Here at Ohio State I have developed leadership skills through my involvement with the STEM EE Scholars Program, Pre-Dental Club, Gamma Phi Beta Sorority and Volunteers Around the World Dental (VAW). I want to continue my involvement as a STEM scholar as a member of Pre-Dental Club. Just recently, I was elected as Webmaster for VAW and next year, I plan to run for an executive position within Gamma Phi Beta. Connecting my leadership experience to service, I have volunteered at Columbus Performance Academy and have created group experimental development projects with STEM EE Scholars. Through Gamma Phi Beta, I have volunteered as a running buddy for Girls on the Run International and have fundraised for our philanthropy of building strong girls. Within VAW next year, I plan to go on the annual trip to an impoverished, Spanish-speaking country to volunteer by providing dental care to those in need. As these are simply a few ways I have become involved in relation to G.O.A.L.S., I wish to continue my leadership and service work through my professional career. Leadership Development and Service Engagement will truly improve my life and the lives of others as I strive to achieve my future ambitions.

Pediatric Dentist Shadowing Experience


On multiple occasions over the past year, I have had the opportunity to shadow Dr. Robbins, a pediatric dentist, in both her private practice as well as the operating room in Cleveland, Ohio. From my shadowing experiences, I have learned more about what the career of pediatric dentistry entails. By spending time with Dr. Robbins, I feel more motivated to do well in coursework and stay involved with clubs and other activities at Ohio State.


After taking the Gallup Strengths Finder 2.0 self-assessment, I was informed that my top five strengths respectively are input, positivity, developer, empathy and adaptability. In contrast to an individual’s talents, strengths represent an individual’s consistent, near perfect qualities. After reading the descriptions for each of my top five strengths, I can clearly identify as to how each of them describes me as a person and as a student.

Firstly, the self-assessment informed me of my input strengths. Oddly enough, the description of input as the tendency for a person to inquisitively collect things such as information or tangible objects describes me perfectly. I have always had a strong curiosity in wanting to know a great deal about countless different things; I love to learn. I can identify my input strengths in my everyday life for I enjoy collecting things, even if they will not be of use to me in the future. I also like to keep an open mind to new thoughts and opinions. Relating to my academics, even if I struggle to grasp a new concept, I still feel a desire to study and understand it.

As glass-half-full kind of person, I confirmed of my positive qualities from the self-assessment for positivity was my second strongest strength. I can thoroughly relate to the description provided about positivity stating that positive people remain optimistic and generously praise the doing of others. From my point of view, I see myself as having these characteristics for I handle failure well. If a situation does end well or end as planned, I try to find the best in what happened: I do not like to focus on the negative aspects of an occasion. By maintaining a hopeful and lighthearted outlook on life, I am able to move forward easily. My positive characteristics shine through in my academics for I am able to celebrate achievements and complete tasks with enthusiasm.

For my third strength, I was assigned developer. Tying in with the positivity strength of being able to see the best in everything, a developer is described as an individual who can notice potential in others and push them to reach that potential. I see myself as more of a subconscious developer because I do not think I am upfront or direct in the way that I wish to help other grow. On a personal note, I dream of everyone being able to become their best self. Exhibiting features of a developer, I often find myself drawn to others who I believe I can help motivate to grow. Connecting back to the classroom, when I think that I fully comprehend a certain concept, I feel obligated and excited to teach and help others understand it as well.

Empathy was provided by the self-assessment as my fourth strength. The strength of empathy associates itself with an individual’s capability of being able to sense another person’s feelings. As someone who feels deeply about a lot of things, I agree that I am an empathetic person. It is easy and intuitive for me to understand how another person feels based on circumstantial context. By placing myself in another person’s shoes, I am able to share his or her perspective. I can help others express verbally what they might feel and foresee what they could need. I guess that in relationship to my life as a student, I am able to connect with other students by exchanging thoughts and feelings on different assignments and classes.

Lastly, adaptability was appointed as my fifth strength. This final strength of adaptability affirms my enjoyment of living in the moment rather than focusing too intensely on what happened in the past or what will happen in the future. In being adaptable, I have a mindset that reacts well to unexpected changes or sudden requests. I can acclimate well to change for being flexible is not difficult for me. In joint with my education, I can adjust from different teaching styles and different subject matters with ease. I enjoy going with the flow and accomplishing tasks as they come my way.

After discovering my top five strengths, I more specifically recognize and comprehend my tendencies and personal characteristics. My future goals have become more certain in confirming what I can do well. I think that if I focus on my strengths and use them to their full extent, I will be able to achieve my future personal and professional ambitions. On a personal level, my strengths will help me build deeper relationships with people in my life. My unique set of strengths will push me to achieve all short and long term goals that I create for myself.

Welcome to my Honors & Scholars e-Portfolio

This Honors and Scholars ePortfolio presents information about me, Meredith Guggenheim. I am a STEM EE Scholar and a Health Professions Explorations major on a pre-dental track here at OSU. I plan on receiving an undergraduate degree at Ohio State and then attending dental school to someday become a pediatric dentist! On my ePortfolio, readers can learn about me as an individual, a student and a STEM EE Scholar as I highlight my educational and life experiences. Thanks for reading!


[ “G.O.A.L.S.” is a place where students write about how their planned, current, and future activities may fit into the Honors & Scholars G.O.A.L.S.: Global Awareness, Original Inquiry, Academic Enrichment, Leadership Development, and Service Engagement. For more information, go to: Delete these instructions and add your own post.

Global Awareness: Students cultivate and develop their appreciation for diversity and each individual’s unique differences. For example, consider course work, study abroad, involvement in cultural organizations or activities, etc .
Original Inquiry: Honors & Scholars students understand the research process by engaging in experiences ranging from in-class scholarly endeavors to creative inquiry projects to independent experiences with top researchers across campus and in the global community. For example, consider research, creative productions or performances, advanced course work, etc.
Academic Enrichment: Honors & Scholars students pursue academic excellence through rigorous curricular experiences beyond the university norm both in and out of the classroom.
Leadership Development: Honors & Scholars students develop leadership skills that can be demonstrated in the classroom, in the community, in their co-curricular activities, and in their future roles in society.
Service Engagement: Honors & Scholars students commit to service to the community.]



After my experiences in the STEM Exploration and Engagement scholars program this past academic year, I thoroughly believe that I have learned many transferrable skills that will help me in the future in entering the professional world.  Specifically, as a STEM EE Scholar, I have developed both accountability and communication skills.  In the scholars program, students must take responsibility of their schedules as they integrate scholars oriented events, classes and enrichment activities into their busy school lives.  Experiences as a STEM scholar shape me to think more critically and pay closer attention to details that I might otherwise have overlooked.  Also, I believe that this scholars program has taught me to be a better communicator.  Learning about STEM fields with other first and second year scholars students pushes me to discuss plans and ideas for the future.  I can now better coordinate with others for within the program, scholars students are promoted to working with one another, scholars coordinators and other academic professionals.

Along with these skills learned enhanced by the STEM EE Scholars program, I have learned other skills from my participation in other academic and co-curricular endeavors.  For example, I have developed stronger planning and critical thinking skills as a member of Pre-Dental Club at Ohio State.  At Pre-Dental Club, perspective students considering attending dental school discuss ways to achieve during undergraduate years and ways to apply to dental school.  My experiences in Pre-Dental Club help me to focus and plan for my future to fulfill goals that I set for myself.  In considering dental school as a viable option post undergraduate work, I have thought critically.  Pre-Dental Club aids me in weighing pros and cons to my decision plans in choosing a career that will be the best fit for me.   These transferrable skill I have learned from my participation in the STEM EE scholars program and Pre-Dental Club will hold key when entering and working in the professional world.


[Artifacts are the items you consider to be representative of your academic interests and achievements. For each entry, include both an artifact and a detailed annotation.  An annotation is a reflective description of the artifact that attempts to communicate its significance.  For more information, go to: Delete these instructions and add your own post.]

About Me



Hi all! Welcome to my About Me Page! My name is Meredith Guggenheim and I’m 18 years old. I grew up in a small, quaint town just outside of Cleveland, OH called Chagrin Falls. My immediate family includes my two loving and supportive parents, my younger brother, Andrew, and myself. I have two chocolate labs named Kacy and Mandy. Some things that I love to do are travel, play tennis, dance, paint and shop! I enjoy learning about different cultures and have traveled to Austria, France, Germany, Mexico, Slovenia, Switzerland and many US states. I played tennis in high school and danced at Fairmount Center for the Performing Arts. Dance has been a huge part of my life; it allows me to express myself through movement and pushes me be more outgoing. I started dancing 11 years ago and regularly took ballet, contemporary, jazz, modern, pointe and tap classes. I performed in biannual recitals, local festivals and events. Last March I traveled to New York City to perform with dancers from my studio. I also like to stay involved religiously. At my church, I served as a representative on the Youth Leadership Team and attended youth group events and mission trips. I identify myself as a patient individual, a caring friend and a focused student.

Regarding my education, I attended Chagrin Falls Schools, a public school system, and graduated in a class consisting of 150 students. It was beneficial for me to go to such a small school for I was able to make lasting friendships and strong connections with my teachers. The administrators at Chagrin Falls Schools value the arts and the creation of well-rounded students. At Chagrin, I was able to take rigorous AP classes while also taking various art classes such as film photography, painting, computer graphics and drawing. In school, I played the violin and had the opportunity to perform with my high school orchestra at Disney World in Orlando, FL. I also was able to travel to Paris, France with my French class and stay with a French family in Toulouse. As a person who loves to stay busy and involved, I joined lots of clubs in high school such as, Key Club, International Club, Philosophy Club and Art Club. I was also co-editor of an annual booklet at my high school that features student artwork and writing. Even though I involved myself in many school-based activities, I applied myself in my classes and took them very seriously.

I believe that my science and math teachers at school and health professionals that I’ve come in contact with have made me interested in the STEM fields. For example, seeing the passion and excitement my science and math teachers brought into the classroom pushed me to want to learn and do well in class. During my senior year, I had to complete a Capstone research paper. For my paper, I chose to research Pediatricians. Through my research and writing, I realized more about my interest in STEM fields and more specifically, the medical field. At the end of senior year, I was able to complete a senior project and shadowed a Pediatric Dentist. I thoroughly enjoyed learning about Pediatric Dentistry because I love working with kids and am interested in the medical field. After my senior project, I presented information that I learned at a grade wide senior project showcase. This summer I learned even more about Pediatric Dentistry while volunteering with Team Smile, an organization focused on providing free dental care to inner city children. I met and talked to local pediatric dentists and other oral health care providers. These opportunities to explore have surely impacted me and will guide me in deciding what I want to.

After visiting Ohio State for the first time in the spring of my junior year of high school, I knew that I wanted to be a buckeye. I was amazed by the sense of community, the drive to learn and excel and of course, the team spirit! When applying for OSU, I found out more information about the scholars programs offered and was intrigued by the STEM EE program. I thought that the STEM EE program would be a good fit for me because it would allow me to learn more about STEM fields and connect with other students interested in them. Now that I’ve moved in on campus and classes have started, I am super excited to be a buckeye and a STEM EE Scholar at The Ohio State University!