As a dual degree engineering student and an award-winning student-athlete, Carlee Joseph, ’19, has learned to balance her time while still finding ways to get involved on campus and in her community.
“Meredith offers the best of both worlds,” said Carlee. “I knew that I wanted to pursue an engineering degree while playing lacrosse. There were no other schools in the country like Meredith that offered the small school benefits combined with the opportunity to attend one of the best engineering programs in the country, and had a lacrosse program."
The Hollywood, Md., native is captain of the lacrosse team and a member of Pi Mu Epsilon National Mathematics Honor Society. Pursuing degrees in mathematics and mechanical engineering at two schools at once hasn’t been easy, but Carlee has faced her challenges and found ways to succeed.
“Math and engineering are both difficult fields to study, but I have learned to prioritize my time and focus on what is most important first,” said Carlee. “Lacrosse keeps me focused and helps me to reach my highest potential academically.”
For two summers, Carlee landed internships that have molded her career path. She completed internships through the Department of Defense (DOD) Pathways Program, which is intended to provide practical work experience to students pursuing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) degrees.
In 2015, she worked for the Department of the Navy at Patuxent River Naval Air Station in southern Maryland. In 2016, she worked at the Fleet Readiness Center (FRC) East in Havelock, N.C. In both positions she worked for Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) as an engineering intern supporting full-time engineers and gaining experience in the life cycle support of naval aircrafts, including research, repair, design, test, and evaluation.
“Meredith has helped me to become a confident leader in the classroom – a trait that I know will benefit me in a male-dominated career,” said Carlee.
On the field, Carlee is one of Meredith’s most decorated lacrosse student-athletes. She has collected three USA South All-Conference honors and earned three All-Academic nods. Carlee has been named the team Most Valuable Player for two seasons, and is a two-time USA South Player of the Year.
She has also led her team to three back-to-back conference championship titles and NCAA Tournament appearances to go along with a couple of Academic All-District, All-Tournament, and All-Region honors.
“Playing lacrosse at Meredith has been the best experience of my life,” said Carlee. “I have made lifelong friendships that I will cherish forever. My teammates have become my family and I am grateful beyond words for each one of them.”
Carlee is also a recipient of the Science, Mathematics, and Research for Transformation (SMART) scholarship, which covers full tuition and provides her with a salary, a health insurance stipend, and a book stipend. In return, for each year of payment, she owes the DOD one full year of service upon graduation. Having received the scholarship this year, Carlee will owe two years of service.
The SMART Scholarship for Service Program was established by the DOD to support undergraduate and graduate students pursuing technical degrees in STEM disciplines. This year, only 14 percent of applicants were accepted to the SMART program.
After graduation in 2019, Carlee will complete her SMART Scholarship service at FRC East in Havelock, N.C., where she will work for NAVAIR, in a similar capacity as her internships.
“I am extremely lucky to know what I am going to do after I graduate,” said Carlee. “I have received valuable internships throughout my college education that will prepare me for real world applications of my studies.”
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