If you were a pre-med student-athlete with two majors, you might think spending your precious free time on student government would be overkill. Kathleen Mae Uy is more than up to the challenge, currently holding a position on the Student Senate Executive Committee.
As the Director of Communications at the University of Rhode Island Student Senate, Uy is responsible for writing all official communications from the Senate to the student body. She is also the author of the Rhody Review, the monthly Senate newsletter. Uy first decided to run for Senate during her sophomore year, feeling she was not doing enough extracurricular activities because of her heavy workload.
“I just wanted to get more involved,” she said. “Sometimes when you’re a student-athlete you kind of just stick to that and so I thought Student Senate would be really good.”
Uy initially joined the Cultural Affairs and Campus Affairs committees and eventually became the College of Human Science and Services liaison. Last year, she decided she wanted to take on a more specialized role. Her experience with social media has made being director of communications the perfect fit.
“I just wanted to push myself a little bit more,” Uy said. “I thought [this position] would be the best fit for me because I’m really into social media and I really want to try and get the whole campus involved.”
Currently a member of the Division 1 women’s tennis team, Uy first decided to attend URI after receiving a scholarship for the sport. She had been playing tennis since since she was 4, and the sport had inspired her to pursue a career in physical therapy at the start of her freshman year. Though she eventually decided the profession was not for her, one of her kinesiology courses stirred an interest in entering the medical field.
“It just came to me in class,” she said. “I was learning about heart disease and cardiovascular disease and it just kind of hit me that I wanted to learn more.”
Uy has since added a major in biology to her course load in preparation for medical school a few years after graduation. She intends to take two years off to make all the necessary preparations, one year to study for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) and the second for the application process. Uy plans to attend school back home in New York, so she can stay close to her parents in Elmhurst, Queens.
For now, Uy is spending her senior year at URI enjoying the simple things in life. Though most of her time is devoted to studying in the library, she loves to cook in her dorm room in Garrahy Hall and to spend time with friends on campus. Uy is also taking in the unique atmosphere that she misses out on back home. “I just like how the leaves change in the fall and how, in the spring, the trees start to bloom and you see the pinks,” she said. “You don’t really get that in New York City that much. I think that’s what I love the most.”
And of course, Uy is making the most of her ability to interact with the student body as director of communications. She said she is always thrilled to hear that her newsletters or emails are reaching so many students.
“Friends actually came up to me and said ‘I saw your name. I saw your e-mail.’” Uy said. “I like that.”