Megan Brown, Biology Major
By Ryan Schoensee
Meet Megan Brown, a biology student in the UTSA College of Sciences who plans on graduating in 2024. As a U.S. Air Force brat, Megan grew up in Japan and England, but she now calls Texas her home. When her active-duty husband received orders to be stationed in San Antonio, she knew that UTSA would be the right fit for her to pursue higher education.
"UTSA is incredibly welcoming and the faculty genuinely want to see their students succeed," said Megan. "What makes this university different from others is the diversity and support it offers to all its students."
Megan transferred to UTSA in 2021 after leaving the Air Force. She’s always had a passion for science and personally excelled in the subject of biology. She appreciates that the UTSA biology program provides a foundational understanding in chemistry, which she feels is important to her studies. Her favorite professors in the College of Sciences are Todd Troyer, associate professor in the Department of Neuroscience, Developmental and Regenerative Biology and Mark Davidson, senior lecturer in the Department of Chemistry, because of their engaging teaching styles and how they work to ensure all their students understand the material.
During Megan’s time as a Roadrunner, she’s served as the Vice President for Women in STEM and the Public Relations Officer for the Student Veterans Association.
Recently, Megan was selected to present at The University of Texas at Austin for their Capitol of Texas Undergraduate Research Conference that was held on March 26, 2022. Her presentation, "UTSA is using Curricular Analytics to Improve Student Degree Progress" included research she’s been collaborating with the UTSA Undergraduate Studies Office on and was one of three to be announced as an Honorable Mention out of 48 other oral presentations.
Megan’s curricular analytics research involves reviewing certain degree programs and their curriculum and analyzing data that can provide visualizations for spotting bottlenecks and other issues that delay a UTSA student from graduating. Megan identifies and annotates any hidden curriculum that could impede a student’s progress and plans on later presenting her findings to each college at UTSA to help their students achieve their academic goals sooner.
The best advice Megan received at UTSA comes from a mentor who encouraged her to always push forward and never give up so that she could also stay focused on accomplishing her own academic goals.
"There are days where I struggle to balance between being a student, a wife, and a mom of three kids, and I feel like I should just give up because I tell myself I don’t belong," said Megan. "However, I’ve been lucky to have mentors at UTSA who understand and push me to succeed and overcome the self-doubt."
After Megan graduates, she plans on attending graduate school and pursuing more research opportunities related to the neurological reasoning behind developmental delays in children. She wants to take what she learns to help others, specifically those with children who may be experiencing developmental delays due to possible neurological conditions.