Humans of UK: Ginny Lyle accepts the ‘Chell’enge with the Chellgren Student Fellows Program


Travis Fannon

UK Student Genny Lyle poses for portrait on Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2022, at The William T. Young Library in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Travis Fannon | Staff

Taylor Moon, Reporter

The “Chellows” of the University of Kentucky are a group of sophomore students in the Chellgren Student Fellows Program, an institution that focuses on student success in research. Ginny Lyle is one of these fellows, finding in the program extracurricular opportunities that go beyond a classroom education.

Lyle is a sophomore medical biotechnology major. She said she came to UK for the wide range of career opportunities offered, and having a background in agriculture through Future Farmers of America, Lyle knew she wanted a future in that field. Lyle is on a pre-veterinary track, and she hopes to use her degree to work in animal shelters in the future.

The Chellgren Student Fellows Program’s website says that it is primarily focused on “original research, generation of creative products or engagement in community service.” The program hosts events centered around academic development, with the website mentioning plays, museums and book discussions. The program also provides financial assistance and connections to campus honor societies.

Lyle described the program as “kind of a cohort of people who are really interested in undergraduate research, and possibly a career in research” and emphasized how much the program has benefited her.

“I think the Chellgren program is really good about encouraging students to reach their full potential, while also reminding themselves that we are human,” she said.

Lyle is involved on campus in many different ways. She is an officer in the Pre-Vet Club and a member of the agricultural and medical biotechnology club. She also attends Christian Student Fellowship’s Synergy and Shift events and dog-sits for 4 Paws for Ability, a service dog training program.

“My number one thing about life in general, but also just coming into college, is just to take opportunities, because you’ll never know where they lead you,” Lyle said.

The Chellgren Fellows program puts an emphasis on supporting their students and pushing them to be the best they can, and Lyle recognizes the attention and time the faculty gives to each of the students.

“They really want their students to be able to succeed and to be able to find their passion,” she said. “There are people around you to help you and support you and answer all your questions.”

She encourages incoming students to take chances, and do things they may be afraid to do, or feel unqualified for.

“Push yourself into areas that you have no idea what you’re doing, but also remember that you don’t have to stress about every single thing,” she said. “I think if you’re struggling with what to do, then why not jump into this and see where it takes you?”