Western Washington University Alumni Association

Shawna Troupe

Major - Kinesiology Pre-Physical Therapy
Hometown - Kelso, WA

“Your generous award will make it a possibility to continue to attend Western Washington University this coming year.”

I decided to come to Western Washington University late in my senior year. Western was not one of my top school choices, but after visiting the beautiful campus and meeting all of the friendly people, I knew that Western would be my home. I completed two years of running start before starting Western, and my original plan was to graduate early. However, as I began to study at Western, I realized that I needed to stay for all four years in order to accomplish everything academically that I wanted to do. I could not afford to stay at Western all four years without help though, and this is what led me to apply for the WWU Alumni Association Scholarship for Undergraduate Students.

This scholarship has tremendously impacted my life. I currently have a part time job, am a member of WWU’s track and field and cross country teams, and attend classes full time. My ability to work enough hours to pay for my education is limited because of my involvement with varsity athletics, so receiving this scholarship affects my ability to continue to study at Western. I have been collaborating with professors and graduate students in my major in research that I hope will be published within the next year, so staying at Western another year is critical to my academic goals. I also plan on attending graduate school for physical therapy, and in order to be accepted to highly competitive programs, I must challenge myself at Western.

I would like to share my experience teaching adapted aquatics at the Arne Hanna Aquatic Center as an experience that has had an important impact on the way I think. Through this opportunity, I realized my passion for rehabilitation with children and disabled individuals. The adapted aquatics program involved teaching swimming and aquatic therapy to individuals with disabilities. Most of the patrons I had the pleasure of teaching were children, and they were the sweetest, most wonderful people I have ever gotten to work with in a therapist role. Throughout my experiences in physical therapy clinics, I have gotten to deal with all types of people. Many people are great and genuinely want to get better, but there are a portion that do not appreciate their therapists or do not want to get better because they do not want to go back to work. Working with the patients at the Arne Hanna Aquatic center made me realize my love for working with individuals who genuinely want to learn and get better, and this confirmed my desire to become a physical therapist and help people like the patrons I met at Arne Hanna.

When I’m not studying, I have a passion for running and mountains. I love to go backpacking, and my dream is to backpack all over the world. I enjoy wake boarding and snow skiing, as well as rock climbing, kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, and white water rafting. Pretty much any activity that gets me outside and enjoying nature, I love to do. I also am a big foodie, and I love to try new restaurants and types of foods. I especially love chocolate and pizza.


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Western Washington University
Alumni Association

516 High Street, MS 9199
Bellingham, WA 98225
360.650.3353 | alumni.wwu.edu
WWU is an equal opportunity institution.