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Student Spotlight

Derrek Hooyman

Derrek Hooyman

“I couldn’t be happier as all my professors have always been accessible and even if they weren’t, they would do everything in their power to make time for me to learn the material.”

Age: 19

Hometown: Appleton, WI

Current residence: Appleton, WI

When attended UWFox: Fall 2012 - present

Background before UWFox

I attended Kimberly High School and graduated in spring 2012.  During high school, I was involved in numerous clubs and organizations outside of school.  While I was in high school, I played soccer, played tennis, ran cross country, and participated in cross-country skiing.  I also was involved in Health Occupation Students of America, Promisemakers, Key Club, and National Honor Society.  I loved giving back to my community, singing in several church choirs, and helping at parish events like fish fries, community free dinners, and parish picnics.  I was employed, and I worked several jobs such as officiating youth sports at the YMCA, watching several families' children, and refereeing soccer.  I’ve had several experiences in high school that I will never forget.  I had a great time when I went on a mission trip to South Carolina to serve the poor.  I also got accepted into a one week long health careers camp and a medical mentoring program in which I shadowed medical professionals and watched two surgeries. 

Why did you choose UWFox?

I chose to attend UWFox for several reasons.  I was having difficulties deciding on which college I should attend.  Then my guidance counselor in high school suggested that I look at UWFox.  I toured the campus and discovered how inexpensive it was compared with other universities.  It also offered more one-on-one time with my professors if I needed assistance and possibilities for me to become involved in the campus community.   After I researched further and talked with others, I knew UWFox was the best decision for my future ambitions because of the opportunities it offered and the positive feedback others provided.   

Have you chosen a major?

Kinesiology: I recently switched my major from Biology to Kinesiology as I have decided on a career as a chiropractor. 

What are you learning that you find interesting and rewarding at UWFox?

I’ve learned to take what I have been given and make use of it for the greater good of others and for myself in academics.  I couldn’t be happier as all my professors have always been accessible and even if they weren’t, they would do everything in their power to make time for me to learn the material.  They are extremely caring and helpful.  Furthermore, I’ve met some exceptional people through my campus involvement and made some strong friendships.  Through these experiences, I’ve had the opportunity to hold a leadership position in the Nursing and Allied Health Club and Biology Club.  Due to the size of the campus, I felt welcome; the clubs were relatively small, which allowed for more opportunities to get to know everyone. 

What are your career plans after UWFox?

I’ve not yet decided on the college or university to which I intend to transfer.  As of now, my choice is between UW-Madison and UW- Eau Claire.  I plan to obtain my bachelor's degree and then go on to a graduate program at a chiropractic college to obtain my Doctor of Chiropractic degree.  Presently I am looking at Palmer Chiropractic College in Davenport, Iowa, but I have a little while to make my decision.  After completing my collegiate chiropractic education and training, I hope to find a business partner and possibly start a private practice as a chiropractor in the Fox Valley area.

Other interesting things about yourself that you’d like to share

I’ve been extremely involved, and plan on staying involved, in my campus
community.  My cousin and I currently help a former teacher who has polio with his water exercises and have developed a strong friendship with him.  He’s one of the nicest and humblest men I have ever met.  This year, I’m also an assistant who helps coach soccer. I really enjoy this opportunity to teach soccer to children.  I‘m also involved in my Catholic church and would’nt be where I am without my Lord, and the support of my family and friends.  They have always been extremely supportive in getting me through difficult times.  I currently have the jobs I did in high school: I work at the YMCA, referee soccer and watch children primarily in the summer as they enjoy participating in sports like soccer.  Something else that’s important to me is my health and compassion for other living creatures.  I recently switched to a vegetarian lifestyle due to many reasons, such as health, and the inhumane treatment of animals.  As a result, I couldn’t be happier!  I also enjoy staying fit and working out at the YMCA.  Through my work-related experiences and service work, I have discovered more about myself and the importance of working and volunteering and how important it is in bringing the community together. 

I’m very grateful for receiving a couple of scholarships to help finance college.  I was awarded scholarships through the UW- Fox Valley Foundation, which holds an annual fundraiser called E.A.T.S. (educational assistance through scholarships) to raise money for scholarships.  I’ve volunteered at this event that’s held at the UWFox campus and want to give others this same opportunity to receive educational assistance.  I also received the Lee Grugel Memorial Scholarship through the UW colleges.  (He served as Chancellor of the UW Colleges from 1991-1996.) I want to carry out his work in remembrance of him.  As Albert Einstein once said, “Only a life lived for others is a life worth living.”  I work very diligently through my service work and academics and try to live my life for others.  Giving back to my community has always been important to me and will continue to be important because I want to use my talents to make my community a better place to live.  I enjoy helping others and enriching their lives because I truly get more out of these activities than I am actually giving.  Volunteering is a way to show how grateful I am for what I have and to demonstrate my gratitude for individuals that assist me, such as teachers, friends and individuals that work at my parish.  I want to be the example for others to follow and make a difference in their lives!

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