She teaches possibly the hardest topic on the planet (Organic Chemistry), she runs around throwing frisbees with her teammates, and also is saving homeless animals back at home! This girl is multifaceted, and this is why Ari Boltax was recently awarded the Brandeis Achievement award along with a $5,000 scholarship per semester for all her accomplishment. Want to get inside the brain of this science athlete and see what gets her motivated? Keep reading!
Hometown: Great Neck, Long Island
Major: Chemistry and Biology
Her Campus: Congratulations on receiving the prestigious Brandeis Achievement Award Ari! Would you be able to tell Her Campus readers more about the award and what it entails?
Ari Boltax: The award is offered to sophomores with a GPA of 3.5 or higher who have made significant contributions to the community. A total of five are chosen from all the applicants. The application processes consisted of an essay describing the how you contributed to the community and two letters of recommendation from Brandeis faculty. The other recipients of the award this year were Fiona Aguilar '14, Daniel Boyle '14, Rebecca DeHovitz '14 and Sara Shahanaghi '14.
HC: That seems like a pretty tough application process, and you sincerely have to shine since Brandeis is such an active community. How exactly do you contribute to the community?
AB: My biggest commitment is being an Organic Chemistry Lab Teaching Assistant—I love teaching. I also do research in the Pepperberg Lab working with African gray parrots, and Woman’s Ultimate Frisbee (Banshee). I am also the Publicity Co-Chair on Relay for Life and I have planned a couple fundraisers. [Let’s see…] I have been occasionally involved in the Waltham Group. Actually, this semester I have had the honor of being involved in the process of reviewing prospective Biology teaching faculty.
HC: Wow, it seems as if you’re always busy! Being a science double major, what do you plan on doing after Brandeis?
AB: Currently, I am looking at Vet School. I love teaching and research. Whatever I do, it will definitely be in the sciences. I have been pre-vet my entire life, and my experiences at Brandeis, teaching Orgo and conducting research, have opened up other possibilities in science education and science research.
HC: That’s interesting that you want to be pre-vet. That’s certainly something that you do not hear every day. Why pre-vet?
AB: Since I decided at so early, it’s really unclear. When I was eight, I begged my parents for a dog. Finally, they caved and got a Maltese puppy. She was this foot-long, adorable white ball of fur. The puppy had a hypoglycemic attack, which is low blood sugar, when I was away at summer camp one day. After that fiasco, we had to give her away. I was sad but more confused because I didn’t know why that happened to the dog that I loved and she couldn’t tell me. I wanted to help her. That’s pretty much when my love for animals started. Now I volunteer at North Shore Animal League, which is a no-kill animal shelter near my town. I love being able to tell prospective adopters the story behind each animal; why they’re at the shelter and what’s wrong like normal human patients. Veterinary science is just really enticing.
HC: Oh, wow. That’s very dedicative of you that you have found your passion at such a young age and have stuck with it since. What is something quirky about you that the readers wouldn’t typically know of you?
AB: I can recite verbatim Finding Nemo and most episodes of Spongebob.