Anna Sandler '19

Class Year


Area(s) of Study

Major in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology


Wheeling, IL

Graduate Study

Rosalind Franklin University

What made you choose LFC?

I chose LFC due to the smaller class sizes and personalized attention given to each student. This was also a school that would offer me the chance to do research in the summer, as early as the end of my first year. Not to mention, the beautiful campus and nearby lake.

How did a liberal arts education make a difference for you?

For starters, I became a better communicator. Whether it be through writing research reports, discussing the ethical implications of advancing science, or presenting posters to the college around me. Learning the complexities of medicine is not enough; it is essential we as health professionals know how to communicate and translate this knowledge to impact our patients.

What experiences outside the classroom helped me prepare for pharmacy school?

After my first year I worked in Dr. Kirk’s lab studying telomeres in fungi, first summer as a Richter Scholar and the following year continuing our work, while mentoring new members. My last year I had the great honor of presenting our class’s research at the 2019  Experimental Biology Conference in Orlando Florida. These experience not only expanded my communication skills, but also enhanced my skills in scientific poster creation, presentation, and efficient utilization of spreadsheets to organize large quantities of data. These skills did not disappear in Pharmacy school; as an executive board member for our school’s clinic, I am in charge of managing all our appointments and orders for our patients so no one is lost to care. Needless to say, spreadsheet work, organization, and the teamwork I learned at Lake Forest College come into use everyday to help run a successful clinic.

How did your time at Lake Forest College help you prepare to apply to Pharmacy school programs?

LFC was very transparent with the main courses I needed to complete as part of my pharmacy pre-requisites in their pre-pharmacy course page. When I was applying to school, I could easily match up the courses offered at LFC to the ones required from each pharmacy school. Additionally, my advisor Dr. Kirk was essential in helping me organize my classes and provided advise during my application process. She was so readily accessible, and I could always come in whenever something was troubling me.

What advice would you give a high school student looking to pursue pre-health and is considering Lake Forest College?

Definitely consider this program.  This will allow you to form close ties with RFU, while finishing LFC studies one year early and still completing your bachelors-and it does not even have to be in a science! LFC will give you the skills to be successful in graduate school, and even if a class is not directly related  to what you plan to go into, it will set the critical thinking, study, and communication skills needed for the health professional programs. My success in pharmacy school without my foundations in biochemistry and molecular biology under the teachings of readily-accessible professors and many out-of-classroom-experiences would not have been possible.