Student Spotlight: Loran Bolin
When Loran Bolin started at Gaston College in 2020, she considered herself a timid student and she was unsure that she could succeed in college. She will graduate with an Associate in Science degree in December 2022 as a confident, self-assured person who is going on to UNC-Charlotte with educational and career goals firmly in place.
Loran’s participation in the SPARC program, which helps students succeed in STEM-related majors, confirmed her interest in science, and at UNC-C she will major in biology and minor in earth science, with the goal of being a wildlife biologist. “SPARC exposed me to networking opportunities that helped me get an internship at the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation,” said Loran. “Also, SPARC encourages students to get involved in undergraduate research and the program really pushes you to do your best and get involved on campus and in your community.”
The TRiO Student Support Services program and the College’s Food Bank were also valuable resources for Loran. “TRiO has played a major part in my success at Gaston College,” she said. “It gave me the confidence to believe in myself and pursue higher education and my advisor goes above and beyond to help me succeed.” Loran uses the Food Bank a few times a month and finds it a comfort to know that food and household items are available there if and when she needs something.
For Loran, the best part of Gaston College has been making lifelong friends and discovering her career interests. “Gaston College helped me find myself as a person,” she said. “It has given me the momentum and confidence to succeed, and I will not stop trying to pursue my education. In the next few years, I will certainly become a wildlife biologist.”