From Savannah to a nuclear reactor


From Savannah to a nuclear reactor

Rise to any challenge. In high school, Kurt Lynn ’16 struggled to graduate. School wasn’t tough—Kurt was just bored. “I wasn’t challenged in classes, so I didn’t try. It wasn’t until I got to Savannah State that anyone really pushed me.”

In one of Kurt’s first classes, pre-calculus, his professor pulled the math major aside and told him he shouldn’t be there. He moved Kurt to a tougher class.

“The math department shows me my potential. They keep me on track and help me see just how much I can do.” – Kurt Lynn ’16

It's moment like that one that moved the former NROTC midshipman to call his classmates, shipmates, and professors his family. One that looked out for and supported him.

That’s how Kurt wound up interning in Washington D.C., working on a nuclear reactor at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. A professor suggested Kurt apply for the summer internship. Members of the math department helped him with everything, from writing his essay to getting recommendations to buying his train ticket. Not too long after, he was doing radiation analysis, taking apart helium vacuums, and building a nuclear reactor cooling system. His new goal: Making the cut for the Nuclear Navy.

With its 23:1 student-faculty ratio (and a student body of more than 4,900), Savannah State gives undergrads the kind of one-on-one experience with professors that only graduate students typically get at larger universities. The College of Science and Technology (COST) is home to plenty of sponsored research programs that pair undergraduates with professors to give them hands-on opportunities, including MAGEC-STEM, PRISM, and PS-LSAMP.

COST has earned grants from organizations like the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, and NASA, which make it possible for SSU Tigers to analyze muscular chemicals, study gene manipulation, and track dolphin populations with faculty.

In Kurt’s case, being at a smaller university gave him access to professors who cared about who he was and what he was interested in. And it led to one of the best summers of his life. Seriously Impressive

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