Prep Elite: Personal Experience Inspires Providence Academy’s Austin DeSmet’s Doctoral Aspirations

by | Sep 2020

Providence Academy senior Austin DeSmet

Photo: Tate Carlson

Providence Academy senior Austin DeSmet has Osgood-Schlatter disease, which has inspired him to become a doctor.

Fall brims with new beginnings and fresh challenges. As seniors in high school embark on months of endings and “lasts,” they, too, are preparing for transitions after high school.

Before it’s time to don the mortarboards, let’s take a moment to give a tip of the hat to this year’s Prep Elite students, who were among students nominated by their schools and selected for this spotlight by our editorial team. Read about the other Prep Elite students here: Tristana TaturKevin ZhangAlbertline Solo

Austin DeSmet, Providence Academy

“Austin DeSmet is an extremely bright student, possessed of intellectual vitality and an authentic joy of learning. With an unweighted GPA of 3.95/4.0 in a more rigorous college preparatory pathway, Austin has established himself as a student of academic integrity. He has pursued his deep interest in our suite of honors/advanced STEM courses, especially geometry, calculus, physics, engineering and biology courses due to their ‘complexity and focus on critical thinking.’ He also enjoys history and other non-sciences subjects with the makings of a lifelong scholar. He already plans to join our scientific research team in Costa Rica through our school’s collaboration with Seeds of Change to further his passion for the study of biology. What is striking about Austin, besides the fact that he takes on academic challenges while maintaining a strong work ethic, is that he also shares his talents within our community through [other] contributions: basketball, baseball, Medical Club, Recycling Club and a newly-formed Spike Club. Austin [was slated] to represent Providence Academy at [American Legion] Boys State, having served as a student leader of a group of young men that meets regularly to build community and to enrich and pass on to all students the Providence mission of faith, knowledge and virtue …” —Sarah Hogan, college counseling

What or who influenced you the most during high school?

“My most impactful experience in high school began with a simple trip to physical therapy. I had Osgood-Schlatter disease, which is an inflammation of the patellar ligament. During physical therapy, I did exercises to strengthen my legs to alleviate the stress on the ligament. Lifting started to become one of my favorite hobbies, but the exercise itself was only part of the fun. I started to research everything I could on how to gain muscle the fastest way, from nutrition to actual exercise. I was intrigued by all of this, and it has led to my aspirations of becoming a doctor.” —A.D.

Your future in three words: Innovative, inspiring and physician


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