HCHS Sophomore Katie Kruger, Delegate representing Hancock County High School and the Commonwealth of Kentucky at the Congress of Future Medical Leaders this summer.
Kruger, Sophomore at Hancock County High School, was nominated for academic recognition as a Delegate representing Hancock County High School and the Commonwealth of Kentucky at the Congress of Future Medical Leaders, held on June 21st through June 23rd, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts.
Katie was nominated by Nobel Prize winner in Medicine and Science Director of the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists, Dr. Mario Capecchi and was selected for this prestigious national program because of her outstanding academic record, her leadership potential and her dedication to the service of humanity through medicine.
She just received her letter last week and said that it was unexpected. “I was very surprised to get this letter,” Katie said, “because I’m not really sure how I got nominated for it. I was really happy to receive it.”
She said she has always been interested in the medical field, even since she was a very young child. “I’ve always thought about being a doctor, and then math has always been a really strong subject for me in school,” Katie said. “All of the medical field and all of the workers – all of it has inspired me to want to help people and be involved in that kind of work.”
Duke, Vanderbilt and Johns Hopkins Universities are a few she said she’s been looking at already. She has also been thinking about which field she prefers. “I’ve tossed around being an anesthesiologist or something in that field, or a cardiothoracic or cardiovascular surgeon,” Katie said.
Katie was nominated by Mrs. Helm, her English teacher at HCHS, last year to attend Harvard for a Pre-med Level 1 course. She attended the week-long course last summer and said she really enjoyed it, and that it helped prepare her for her upcoming trip this summer. “I definitely feel like it prepared me more and I kind of know what I’m going into,” Katie said.
“When I went up there it was a really great experience. There were lots of tours going around the university and a little bit around Harvard Square. We got to hear some insight from some of the students there and how they enjoyed it. There were lots of other kids there which was really exciting and a fun experience to meet everyone.
If anyone ever gets the opportunity to go to Harvard and do a tour or get into a course, I feel like it would be a really good opportunity to go and see what it’s like. Their medical center – it was eye-opening to see all of the different classes and how everything is set up.”
On her trip last summer to Harvard, Katie’s mother and father, Lisa & Terry Kruger, joined her. They will also be flying to the Congress of Future Medical Leaders with her this summer for the 3-day trip. “My parents have supported me all the way through,” Katie said. “Even when I was little, they just told me to keep going for what I wanted to do. They really have been there to help me through everything.”
Katie’s mom, Lisa, said she highly recommends the class at Harvard to anyone given the opportunity. “If anybody ever gets an invite to attend Harvard whether it be for Pre-med, Level 1 or whatever it is, if it’s within the family’s reach to make that happen for their child, it is a great, great opportunity. She spent the week and there was a lot of homework involved in this course but it was excellent,” Lisa said.
Lisa & Terry extend a huge thank you to Katie’s teachers and counselors, as well as Superintendent Robby Asberry. “Mrs. Helm is the one that got all of this going for Katie and it’s turned into a lot of things for her, a lot of doors,” Lisa said. “Principal Estes, Ms. Smiley and Mr. Magan, they’ve helped Katie throughout all of this journey. Ms. Smiley has been tremendous with helping Katie.
Her father and I are extremely proud of her. We keep telling Katie to keep reaching for the stars – there’s no limit. We are extremely proud of her and want her to continue in the dream that she wants and we’re just super proud of her. We’re super proud of everybody in Hancock County – all the teachers that she’s had, we’re thankful for them. And Superintendent Asberry, he’s invited Katie to a school board meeting so that he can announce her achievement at the meeting because he said he is so proud of her.”
Katie is active in HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) and Beta Club at HCHS. She and her family live in Hawesville. She has 2 siblings, Wesley and Leah. Her family is very proud of her, including her grandmother, Delores McManaway.
By Jennifer Wimmer