Picture of JillianYear in School: 4th

Hometown: San Ramon, CA
Major: Exercise Biology

On-campus leadership roles/positions/organizations: 

Colleges Against Cancer- Current Co-President, Past: Survivorship Chair

Student Alumni Association- Current Vice-President, Past: Alumni Relation and Outreach Director, Aggie Diner Director

Why do you choose to be involved as a student leader?
On a big campus, being a leader is a way to have a voice and be heard. It is a way to make your presence known on campus and leave your unique mark. Being a leader for Relay For Life and the Student Alumni Association has allowed me to feel like part of campus. I am able to interact with and help students not only on the UC Davis campus, but professors, faculty and the greater Davis community. Being a part of these two organizations have given purpose to my time as a student at UC Davis. As a student leader, I have not only made incredible friends, met inspirational people, and share my passion with others, but I also have gained skills as a leader that can carry over to other areas of my life, including my academics and professional career.

What have you learned about leadership through your work with others on campus?
Leadership styles can change dramatically depending on the individuals you are working with, but one thing in common with all leaders is their passion towards their organization. As a student leader myself, I understand my unique way of exhibiting my passion for those activities I am a part of. I enjoy engaging with my fellow club members and encouraging positivity, but also encouraging everyone to aim for excellence. The passion I have for Relay For Life and the Student Alumni Association impact the my leadership style.  As a leader, it is important to realize each organization is different and leadership styles will change and evolve. You have to adapt and be flexible. Find the vibe of the organization work with it!

What is your most memorable experience at UC, Davis? What is your favorite UC, Davis tradition?

My most memorable experience at UC Davis was Relay For Life 2015. My committee and I had been working hard all year to organize this 24-hour cancer fundraising event and it was amazing to see all of our hard work pay off. As this is an event near and dear to my heart, seeing and feeling the impact the event made on the participants and the Davis community is something I will never forget. Every moment of the event was well worth the over 30 hours of no sleep! Memories of last year’s Relay For Life has encouraged me to make this year’s event even more special!

What is your favorite UC, Davis tradition?

It is hard to choose, there are so many!  One of my favorites is Picnic Day! This is such an amazing event, as the entire Davis community comes together to celebrate our university. I love visiting all of the exhibits, watching the dogs in the Doxy Derby races, and listening to Battle of the Bands.  I also like spending time on the quad. It is a great place to hang out with friends and family, people watch, and relax between classes!

What advice would you give to a student thinking about getting involved?

Find something you are passionate about and go for it. Everyone can look at the many A-frames lining the MU walkway and be overwhelmed on how to pick which organization to become a part of. My advice is to not look for or choose an organization that will look ‘best’ on your resume.  Instead, find one for which you are passionate about. Your time in this organization can shape your experience at UC Davis and give purpose to the time you have at this great University. Being involved in an organization you are passionate about makes your experience here all the more memorable.

How has getting involved complement your studies?

I am very organized, scheduled, and time oriented student and individual and I do better when I am busy. My entire scheduled it planned out on Google-calendar. I would be lost without it! Being involved in Relay For Life and the Student Alumni Association helps me stay busy plan out each day. I know that with all the meetings and events I have planned, the time I have to study is limited, and therefore I am more motivated to stay concentrated. Being a part of these organizations have also helped give purpose to my studies.  Through Relay for Life, I have had opportunities to visit the UCDMC Cancer Center and interact with cancer patients. These visits and interactions with patients makes real the information I am learning in my classes. It makes me excited for my future schooling in medicine!

 What are your future plans and how has your involvement on campus prepared you for life after graduation?

I am applying to medical school in June and hoping to work with kids as a Pediatrician. I’m not sure what specialty yet; maybe oncology or cardiology. My work as a student leader has helped me develop skills to become a successful physician, wherever my future takes me.

Fun Facts

  • Role Model:  Dr. Gross and Dr. Saffrath
  • Favorite Quote/Motto:"Be a girl with a mind, a women with attitude, and a lady with class" -Unknown
  • Hobbies: Hiking, being outdoors, traveling aboard, spending time with family, and working out.