The next bridge to health

Pre-health student, Dreah Kuckelman, is making change with the assistance of scholarships and campus programs.

Dreah Kuckelman is getting a head start on changing the world right here on Kansas State University’s campus. Within her research lab, Dreah, a sophomore in medical biochemistry, works with Dr. Jennifer Francois in the College of Health and Human Sciences focusing on childhood developmental psychology.  

In her future practice, Dreah hopes to foster personal connections with her patients as a pediatrician or family care practitioner. If she could bring one thing to the world, it would be interconnectedness. This love for interconnectedness is a result of her time at K-State.

“K-State has taught me about what it means to be a family and be connected to other people,” said Dreah. “To those who invest in K-State’s success, you are investing in family, in this whole community. You are not only facilitating research and activities; you are facilitating connections.”

When Dreah toured Kansas State University, she knew it was like no other university she had visited. Even just the simple act of people smiling and welcoming her to campus affirmed to Dreah that K-State was the place she would call home and where she could start to make a difference in the world. 

The family that Dreah was drawn to during her tour at K-State continued to surround her as she became a student in the fall of 2019. From participating in Wildcat Warm Up to joining pre-med club, Dreah constantly formed relationships with other students.  

“The people here were so willing to welcome me in as family. That family drew me in to want to be more of a part of it,” said Dreah.

One of the organizations Dreah got involved in is Alpha Chi Sigma, a professional chemistry fraternity. She sits on the executive board as the assistant outreach coordinator. In this position, she plans visits to middle schools to help students with chemistry experiments. Another way she gets to share her passion for chemistry is through her work as a teaching assistant for the chemistry 1 lab.

Through these roles, Dreah has the opportunity to give back to K-State. Philanthropy is one of the things that drew Dreah to K-State and continues to power her experience.

“This family atmosphere is not only about the students at K-State, it is about this community, the people that live here in Manhattan,” said Dreah.

One way Dreah gets to spread the aspect of family to the Manhattan community is with her job. Dreah helps a woman living with C5 quadriplegia with daily tasks. Dreah loves getting to hear stories from the woman’s husband, who is a former K-State professor.

While philanthropy has allowed Dreah to get involved and give back, it is also something that has been shown to her. As a part of the Kansas IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (K-INBRE), Dreah has received a program scholarship. With such widespread involvement, this scholarship has allowed research to be possible for her.

“I have to budget my time wisely and decide what I can and cannot manage,” said Dreah. “My scholarship has made research something that is feasible for me.”

Written by: Ariana Brancato

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Jeff Haug

Jeff Haug Director of Development - Health and Human Sciences


Brady Fritz

Brady Fritz Development Officer - Health and Human Sciences