Taryn Rauff ’22
Taryn Rauff ’22 isn’t afraid to explore her options. An international student from South Africa, she originally came to Bryant to play field hockey. After graduating in December 2022, she decided to continue her Bryant journey, first as a biology research associate, and then through the One-Year MBA program. She is confident her hands-on experience at Bryant will help her succeed, no matter what path she takes.
What stands out to you about Bryant?
The classes are quite small, so you have more one-on-one time with your professors. Bryant helps students succeed so that you’re not just a number. They see you as a person, whereas at a larger university, you would just be one of 200 kids in a lecture hall. The diversity of classes is also interesting. In South Africa, as soon as you go to university, you have to know what you want to do and only take those classes. There’s not a lot of diversity back home.
How has Bryant supported your academic journey?
Bryant has helped me succeed a lot academically. I’ve also built close relationships with my professors, who gave me research opportunities and furthered my understanding about biology. I don’t think I would have had as many of those opportunities in another school. I’ve been very grateful for that support.
What are a few highlights of your Bryant experience?
As an undergrad, I worked in a neuroscience lab with Professor Kristin Scaplen. We looked at alcohol intoxication in fruit flies and how that affects neuronal activity. When I graduated in December, I started working in Professor Christopher Reid’s lab looking at antibiotic resistance in bacteria. He’s my mentor, ensuring I’m doing the experiments correctly, analyzing the data, making sure it looks accurate. These tasks are very important, especially if you want to go into research as an academic career. Experience is a huge consideration when applying to graduate programs.
I’ve also played field hockey since freshman year. When you play a sport, you have to focus on two aspects: time management and discipline. That helped me grow and mature as a person.
What are your post-Bryant plans?
It’s interesting. I did a biology degree and now I’m going into business, but I can do something associated with biotechnology or pharmaceuticals. I’m also applying for a Ph.D., so we’ll see where life takes me. I would pursue pathobiology or pathology, the study of disease. I really love microscopy: looking through a microscope and analyzing small things we can’t see on a normal scale. If I go to grad school, I want to work with small organisms, like bacteria or fruit flies.
How has Bryant prepared you for the future?
My communication and presentation skills have definitely improved. Presentation skills are very important for research because you need to inform the science community about your work. Bryant helped me build my confidence. Bryant also prepares you for the working world. It’s not just learning the theory — Bryant’s courses make you practically implement the theory you learn. That’s very important.
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