I grew up in a small town next to Green Bay, Wisconsin, making me a die-hard Packer’s fan and cheese lover. It was not long before my 11th birthday when a vivid calendar of all my life’s events started to form in my head. By age 13, I could look back on the past two years and tell you what I did each day, what I wore, the weather, who I spoke to, where I went. But it was not until college when I discovered the term “Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory”.
As a junior at Marquette University in the fall of 2014, I took a psychology class called “Learning and Memory”. The professor talked about Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory (HSAM), which is when the pieces of the puzzle all fell together. Working with my professor and the researchers at the University of California Irvine, I was able to figure out more about my unique memory and started participating in research studies along with the other 60 people in the world who have HSAM.
Since 2014 I have done interviews with NBC, Reader’s Digest, Scientific American, 60 Minutes, and many other news sources. I believe the more myself and my friends with HSAM bring awareness to the ability, the more people we can find with HSAM who can contribute to the body of research that is helping neurosciences understand conditions like Alzheimer’s and even depression.
Upon graduating from Marquette, I went on to receive my Master’s of Science in Education from Indiana University- Bloomington. Currently, I work for the Division of Student Affairs at Auburn University in Health Promotion and Wellness Services, promoting mental wellness and health education.
-A Snapshot of my Daily Life-
I have one roommate, an eight-year-old Papillon named Brooks who I rescued in December of 2018.
I got him from a foster home in Montgomery. And although he is a very loud roommate who does no cleaning and doesn’t pay rent, the apartment would not be the same without him!
I am very involved in my community in Auburn, whether it is volunteering to work at university events, tailgating at football games, or working at my local church.
This is my first time living outside of the Midwest! And although the south is very different, I have come to love the community I have built in Auburn. War Eagle!
One of my favorite parts of my job is co-advising the Auburn University Active Minds Chapter- a national organization promoting mental health awareness. Active Minds was my ‘bread and butter’ as an undergraduate at Marquette. Going from a chapter president when I was 20-years-old to now being an advisor is a dream come true!
I enjoy traveling with my friends and family around the world, including adventures to Italy, Mexico and the Dominican Republic last year. This year’s adventures were put on hold due to COVID-19. When things are safe, I especially enjoy exploring places near my new home in the Southeastern United States!