Medical career on horizon for rising Riverside senior

Jun. 16, 2014 @ 11:11 AM

Kristen Lovell wants a medical career, but the rising senior at Riverside High School is also a realist.

Lovell, 16, is pretty sure she couldn’t stomach the “blood and stuff” associated with being a surgeon.
So, she has her sights set on a career in biomedical engineering, a field in which engineering and design concepts are applied to medicine for health care purposes.
“This let’s me work with it without actually being a surgeon,” Lovell explained. “I would work with robotics and use a lot of science and math, without being around the blood and stuff.”
Lovell’s short list of colleges includes Duke, N.C. State, Virginia Tech and Carnegie Mellon.
“I’d say right now that Duke is my top choice,” Lovell said. “It was a real honor to get the Duke University Student of the Month.”
In addition to excelling in the classroom – she sports a weighted 5.0 GPA – Lovell is involved in numerous school activities.
She is in the National Honor Society, the National Technical Honor Society, the Modern Music Masters service organization and is senior class president-elect.
Lovell is also a varsity cheerleader and a member of the Advanced Chorus.
“Singing is one of my favorite things to do,” Lovell said.
In the spring, Lovell played Liesl, the eldest Von Trapp child, in Riverside’s production of “The Sound of Music.”
Lovell said she would like to join a college choir and community and church choirs after she finishes school.
She credits Riverside High for her success in and out of the classroom.
“I work really hard to keep my grades up and I’m really involved in my school,” Lovell said. “I’m really proud to go to Riverside because they’ve given me opportunities I wouldn’t have anywhere else.”
She singled out Riverside chorus teacher Jill Boliek for instilling a love for music in students.
“She [Boliek] said her goal was for us to keep it in our lives after school and I think, after being in chorus, that’s definitely going to happen,” Lovell said. “I’m going to try to sing whenever I can.”
Lovell said Riverside’s music program is among the best in the state.
She said it could be better if not for one missing element.
“The only thing, I would say, that would improve us is if we got a new sound system,” Lovell said. “Hopefully, we’ll get that soon.”


Duke University and its Office of Durham and Regional Affairs are proud to sponsor Duke University's Durham Student of the Month. The Office of Durham and Regional Affairs works to broaden Duke's role as an advocate and partner for economic and community development in Durham and the region, with a focus on improving education, health, safety and overall quality of life. Visit to learn more about the office's initiatives and partners.

: 16
GPA: 5.0
School: Riverside
Favorite Book: “Divergent,” by Veronica Roth.
Favorite Music: Pop and country.
Favorite Movie: “The Hunger Games”