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A Student's Perspective: Inviting Environment Attracted Johnson-Bann to Campus
March 24, 2014
Fast-Paced Learner: Grace Johnson-Bann, a senior biomedical engineering student, has been active in the National Society of Black Engineers, varsity tennis team, and pit orchestra for drama club productions. (Photo by Larry Ladig)
Nashville native Grace Johnson-Bann turned down a scholarship from the University of Tennessee to attend Rose-Hulman, where she is a senior majoring in biomedical engineering.
As valedictorian of Hunters Lane High School, Johnson-Bann initially wanted to attend a university with a large, diverse student body. But then she visited Rose-Hulman and was impressed by its collegiality.
“The environment seemed more collaborative and inviting than other engineering schools that I visited,” says Johnson-Bann.
She was sold on Rose-Hulman after spending a weekend on campus through a program organized by members of the student chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE).
“It was good for me to come here and realize that even though there are not as many African Americans, they are still visible and friendly,” she says. “I realized I was not going to be isolated, even though it’s a smaller population.”
Johnson-Bann played on Rose-Hulman’s varsity tennis team, joined the Bowling Club, and played flute in the pit orchestra for the drama club’s fall production, “Jekyll and Hyde: The Musical.” She also has been a leader in the NSBE chapter and helped organize a campus diversity program, featuring three surviving members of the historic civil rights Freedom Riders group.
Having interned at Cook Medical and the Indian Health Service, she is exploring career and graduate school options in the area of global health.
Johnson-Bann says Rose-Hulman has taught her to learn at a fast pace.
“The professors are here to teach you. You are their focus. They are going to know your name, and they are going to remember you,” she says. “That helps because they know where you are at in class and the concepts that you are struggling with. They are readily available for help.”