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Mary Uselmann, ’17

Name: Mary Uselmann

Year in School: Junior

Major: Chemical Engineering

Hometown: Anchorage, Alaska and Brisbane, Australia

Mary Uselmann, a red-haired beauty with an infectious smile, has a background unlike most. This Cutie grew up in Anchorage, Alaska, and because of her parents’ shift in work, moved to Australia when she was sixteen. Now, she is a member of the UW Women’s Swim and Dive team (practically a mermaid…just call her Ariel!) and pursuing a degree in engineering. We know she counts down to Christmas all year round, and in light of the holiday season, we just had to catch up with one of the sweetest (and most festive) girls in town. So just how does Mary balance being an athlete, and a super-tough major, all with a smile on her face? Read on to find out!

Her Campus: What is your favorite Christmas movie?

Mary Uselmann: “Christmas Story, or Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”

HC: What is your favorite holiday treat?

MU: “Hot chocolate, gingerbread houses and candy canes.” 

HC: Tell us about transitioning from the US to Australia in high school, and then back again.  What are the main differences?

MU: “High school in Australia is pretty different – I wore a uniform, we had “morning tea”, and they call math, “maths”… the slang was hard to understand, and it’s actually really hard to understand their accents (just like the Australian guy in Anchorman 2), so I didn’t know what was going on 60% of the time. And there are actually wild koalas and kangaroos!”

HC: How did you get interested in becoming a chemical engineer? What is your favorite thing about engineering?

MU: “Both of my parents are engineers, and I’ve just always been a math and science-oriented person. My favorite thing about engineering is all the problem solving I learn that I can relate to everyday life – like learning how medicines, or kitchen appliances work. Nerdy stuff.”

HC: How do you stay relaxed during dead week and finals, with all the stress of classes and grades?

MU: “Haha I’m not that good at handling stress… I do my best to not take life too seriously, and always make sure to have a good laugh with my friends at some point in the day.  My friends and teammates here always help me relax, and I can count on them to put a smile on my face.”

HC: How long have you been swimming, and what made you stick with it?

MU: “I’ve been swimming since I was a toddler!  I’ve tried skiing, soccer, and track, but I think it’s the people in swimming that made me stick with the sport.”

HC: How do you make sure you take care of yourself for swimming, do all your homework and still get sleep?! (Really though)

MU: “I can’t take too many credit hours a semester, and I just try and be smart with managing my time.  And I’m a real grandma at heart; I go to bed pretty early because I’m so exhausted at the end of the day.  And my friends always know how to brighten my day!”

HC: Which is your favorite Harry Potter book?

MU: “The Half Blood Prince, or The Chamber of Secrets! Love HP.”

HC: Chocolate or vanilla?

MU: “Chocolate.”

HC: Why did you choose UW?

MU: “Tuition cost, location, swimming, academics, and I think the people here are so nice!”

HC: Cake or pie?

MU: “PIE! (pecan)”

HC: If you could live in one romantic comedy, which one would it be?

MU: 10 Things I Hate About You, or The Proposal

HC: Which The Office character do you identify with the most?

MU: “Holly Flax! Or Ryan Howard.”

HC: Describe your dream first date.

MU: “Spontaneous adventure, complete with a lot of good snacks. Or maybe he makes me dinner, then we go get ice cream!”

So if you hang out in the Engineering building a lot, you might just be lucky enough to see this Cutie around. She is a huge inspiration to me personally, and all of us at HC admire her optimism and drive through any challenge! We love you, Mary!

Lauren is a senior at the University of Wyoming pursuing a degree in Marketing. She is the Founding Campus Correspondent of Her Campus at the University of Wyoming, and could not be more in love with her staff and the Her Campus community at large. This California native grew up playing on the beaches of San Diego; and loved the water so much that she is currently a captain of the Women's Swim & Dive Team at UW. She also currently serves as the Content & Copywriting Intern at Wyoming's fastest-growing startup, Bright Agrotech. She feels fortunate to be surrounded by incredible people every day of her busy life, and to live in a world where Ben & Jerry's Phish Food, dachshunds, naps and J.K. Rowling exist. In the future she hopes to land a career at a magazine (think Miranda Priestly, minus the Devil, double the Prada), and if you ask her who her favorite politician is, she will say Leslie Knope. If you'd like to see a few of her other favorite things, be sure to follow her personal Instagram account, @lauren_isabelle.
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