Ashley Kerslake
Biology Major // Psychology Minor

With more than 45 majors and minors and nine nine pre-professional programs to choose from, Mount Mercy University offers a wide variety of study options. One pre-professional program in particular—pre-dental—drew Ashley Kerslake ’18 to the Hill.

With plans to attend the University of Iowa College of Dentistry after graduation, the biology major and psychology minor felt Mount Mercy’s pre-dental program would prepare her best.

“One thing I really liked about Mount Mercy is that they have a holistic approach in their curriculum,” Ashley said about why she chose to attend Mount Mercy. “It definitely helps students to be well-rounded and gives them a chance to experience other departments of education.”

In addition to the university’s holistic approach, Ashley chose Mount Mercy after a small push from her mom, who is a 2003 alumnae. Her decision was made after she met with Head Softball Coach Larry Yoder.

“I was already pretty convinced that Mount Mercy was where I wanted to go when I met with Coach Yoder,” she said. “Finding out I would get to continue playing softball at the university level really sealed the deal.”

After starting classes, Ashley was surprised by the amount of individual attention professors commit to students—a benefit Mount Mercy students often mention.

My professors have really pushed me and helped me transform into the student I am now,” she said. “I have taken initiative and have invested myself into my education. I can’t stress enough how helpful the professors have been at pointing me in the right direction, preparing me for my future, and helping me make connections.”

Guidance from professors led Ashely to seek experiences beyond the classroom.

She became involved with Science Club, which includes graduate program visits and community outreach opportunities; shadowed a local dentist; took part in faculty-student research and University of Iowa’s summer pre-dental academy; and earned a summer internship with an endodontist just blocks from campus.

“The people you meet here will push you and support you. The classes in the biology program are tough, but when grades go in at the end of the semester it is very rewarding knowing you worked extremely hard for those results. I can confidently tell you that the professors here want to see you succeed as much as you want to succeed.”