Class of 2021 Spotlight: Olivia Keller

Olivia Keller ’21 majored in health and human, and minored in Modern Greek Studies.

Major/extracurriculars/volunteering (feel free to brag)

I am a health and human sciences major, with a minor in Modern Greek Studies. Over my time at LMU I was the vice president of one of the dance teams on campus, the D-Lions. Additionally, I created a contact tracing program in partnership with the Los Angeles Department of Public Health during the pandemic so that LMU students could help the greater Los Angeles community in the fight against COVID-19.

Why did you decide to minor in Modern Greek Studies?

I decided to minor in Modern Greek Studies as it was a way to get closer to my Greek family and to be able to continue my humanities education outside of science. My grandparents still live in Greece, and this distance resulted in me feeling very disconnected from my own Greek identity. By minoring in Modern Greek Studies, I was able to explore my own identity and family history in a more in-depth way.

What did you study in the program?

As a Modern Greek Studies minor, I primarily focused on Modern Greek History spanning from the period prior to Greek Independence during Ottoman rule to the current climate of Greece surrounding the refugee crisis. The history of Greece is incredibly rich and complex and fits into a greater world narrative that often does not get attention in traditional history classes. On a personal note, learning about the history of Modern Greece helped me to contextualize my own familial history and connected me to my ancestral past.

How did the program’s Modern Greek Studies community/people impact your experience at LMU?

One of the reasons I chose to attend LMU was because of the Modern Greek Studies program. Being a part of the department has allowed me to engage with the Los Angeles Greek Community and introduced me to many aspects of Greek culture that I would not have been able to connect with any other way. Additionally, department professors take interest in us students as people, so I have certainly found mentors through the Center.

What are you doing now, and what are your professional goals?

Post-graduation, I will be working at the UC Davis Medical Center as a medical scribe before applying to graduate school to become a Physician Assistant.

Anything else you would like to share about the program with prospective students?

I strongly encourage prospective students to consider minoring in Modern Greek Studies. Being part of such a tight knit community is truly special and the classes truly help one become a more global citizen.