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Student Snapshot: Daisheau Player ’22

Daisheau "Shea" Player '22

So far at Dickinson, Student Senate President Daisheau Player ’22 has completed intensive and very different internships, including one centering on surgery robotics and lab protocol at Johns Hopkins University. She's also volunteered and learned about cultural history in Hawaii, served as class president and director of student life for Student Senate, and helped shape Dickinson through all-college committees. She also plays club basketball, leads campus tours and shares insights from her time at Dickinson as a peer mentor.

Hometown:

Baltimore, Maryland.

Major:

Chemistry.

Clubs and organizations:  

Delta Sigma Theta, Student Senate (president), A.C.E. Peer Mentor, Liberty Caps Society (tour guides), women’s club basketball, Department of Athletics (sports-medicine student-assistant), Center for Advising, Internships & Lifelong Career Development (peer advisor) and Residence Life

Honors/scholarships/awards:

Richard M. Sheeley Memorial Scholarship and Ernest A. Vuillemier Scholarship.

Favorite podcast:

This American Life.

Favorite movie:

Hidden Figures.

Best thing about my major:

As a chemist, you frequently reason through and solve problems objectively. Chemistry really helps me to understand and analyze the world around me. Having a good understanding of chemistry has also benefited me as it relates to safety with household chemicals, medications, and cooking. Chemistry is also just fun!

As I kid, I wanted to be …

… a pediatric cardiologist.

On choosing Dickinson:

I first learned about Dickinson from my high school advisor, Beth Green ’91, who is a Dickinson alum. My first visit to Dickinson was as a part of the Discover Diversity program, and at the time I hadn’t yet applied to Dickinson. This experience put Dickinson near the top of my list. Being able to hear about the experiences of students of color on campus and my interactions with my future classmates and faculty were essential to my decision to apply to Dickinson. After applying and being accepted, I did another overnight visit during Admitted Students Day, and it sealed the deal.

The most impactful factor was experiencing the friendliness and enthusiasm of other Dickinsonians. I got “lost” on my way back to the admissions building, and a current student noticed that I was having some difficulty. I was actually just right across the street, but they noticed that I was lost and walked with me back to Admissions. This experience is representative of how I continue to experience the Dickinson community.

Favorite place on campus:

Rector Atrium.

Favorite Dining Hall food:

Chicken pot pie.

Favorite class:

Biomedical Ethics with Assistant Professor of Philosophy Amy McKiernan. This class combines my interests in science, law and medicine in the most interesting and meaningful way. Professor McKiernan’s enthusiasm and passion about the material is so contagious. I love having the opportunity to discuss systemic and more personal issues in the breakout rooms and with the whole class. The assigned readings are so thought provoking, I often find myself seeking out other sources and sharing the readings with friends and mentors.

About my internship:

This summer, I interned at Johns Hopkins Hospital in the Department of Surgery. I had the opportunity to spend time in the Minimally Invasive Surgical Training Center, learning about surgical robots and laboratory protocol. I shadowed doctors and observed surgery in the Pediatric Cardiac Surgery Department. I also spent time in trauma surgery and transplant surgery. In addition to shadowing, I also worked on research project surrounding Vivien T. Thomas. I went to the archives weekly to look at correspondences, manuscripts, laboratory notes and other information with the goal of understanding how Vivien T. Thomas felt about not initially receiving credit for the development of the procedure with Drs. Alfred Blalock and Helen Taussig to correct Blue Baby Syndrome.

I’ve also interned at Johns Hopkins, both in the legal and human-resources department. In the legal department, I continued my work from the previous summer and served as senior intern. The following summer, I worked as a human resources college-peer mentor, supervising 25 high-school interns working with the Johns Hopkins University and Health System. These experiences combined my interest in the legal profession with my interests in science and medicine. I had the opportunity to attend proceedings for high-profile cases, conduct research, share my findings and work with attorneys in a number of practice groups. From this internship experience, I learned the importance of self-advocacy, prioritization, and organization. (I also learned that I don’t want to practice employment and labor law.)

Post-Dickinson plans:

As a result of my internship, I’m hoping to be an abdominal transplant surgeon, because of 1) the unique lifelong relationship I get to develop with the patients (being able to follow the patient for a lifetime is something unique to transplant surgeons because of the nature of transplants and possible rejections) and 2) through abdominal transplants, you can give someone life without another losing their life.

Little-known hobby/talent:

Cooking! It’s a bit new, but I really enjoy it.

About my service trip:

During the 2018 winter break, I had the opportunity to participate in a service trip to Oahu, Hawaii, where we deeply explored the Native Hawaiian Renaissance. Learning about the painful, dark and often hidden history of Hawaii, while exploring one of the most beautiful places in the world, was one of the most eye-opening experiences I have had during my time at Dickinson. Working alongside native Hawaiians and students from Chaminade University helped me understand the complexities of social justice (and the near loss of an amazingly rich culture) through a completely different lens. 

If I could have dinner with anyone, living or dead, it would be …

… Viola Davis.

On helping to shape Dickinson:

I am the Student Senate president, and I previously served as the sophomore class president. I’ve also served on the Enrollment and Student Life Committee, along with other all-college committees and the Implementation Committee and subcommittees.

Best thing about my Dickinson experience:

My mentors have played a huge role in my life, before and during my time at Dickinson. They have provided me with an immeasurable amount of motivation, support and guidance. My time at Dickinson has enabled me, through various avenues, to be on the other side of the mentor-mentee relationship. Some of these avenues include being a Peer Advisor, Resident Advisor and academic and co-curricular excellence mentor. These roles have shaped my Dickinson experience to a great degree. They have helped me identify my weaknesses and build confidence in skills like working across differences and communicating effectively. These experiences also helped me learn what it truly means to be a leader.

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Published September 13, 2021