Keller Andrews could say that he came to ACU because of a stroke of fate. Or a lucky fluke, or the hand of God. He prefers to see it simply as things working out the way they’re supposed to.
He only applied to two universities in high school: A&M and ACU. Somehow, ACU lost his application. Yet Keller chose to come to ACU.
At ACU, he’s part of a tightly knit department in which professors and students interact on a daily basis and where a one-on-one environment is not only acceptable, but expected. Keller says his professors are well-qualified in their fields and good teachers as well – two qualities that don’t always go hand in hand. He appreciates their efforts to give life and meaning to a subject often regarded as dry and unexciting.
“They have a sense of humor,” he said.
And he’s not getting shortchanged academically, either. The small size of the department and the frequent interaction with professors create the kind of relationships that foster academic excellence, he said. So, when Keller is comparing ACU to the state schools he might have attended otherwise, he’s satisfied with his choice.
Brookhaven National Laboratory
Studying at ACU has also given him research opportunities he might not have found elsewhere. Keller spent last summer at Brookhaven National Laboratory on Long Island. He and five other ACU students joined students and researchers from around the world in a project that examined the spin of atoms in a supercollider. Most of the students’ work involved building prototypes to upgrade the system. Keller’s job was to write the “how-to document,” as he calls it.
He and the other students lived in a duplex apartments on the island, in a wooded area populated with deer and fowl. They worked from 9 to 5, Monday through Friday, but the rest of the time was their own. It wasn’t just all work and no play. The students found time to make it to the Big Apple and even joined a colleague from the lab for a Fourth of July dinner.
Keller is looking forward to going back this summer. He’ll enjoy the work experience and making connections with others who share his love of physics. And he knows that internships like this will be useful in his future.
“It’s pretty good experience for a job later,” he said.
Keller doesn’t have his future completely mapped out, but he does have a few ideas about what he wants to do with his degree. He’d like to go on to graduate school for a master’s and possibly a doctorate. He’s interested in teaching physics, either in high school or college. He’s also thought about going into research.
Sharing his passion for science
No matter what his career may encompass, he does know one thing about it. Keller Andrews is determined to make physics exciting, to share his passion for science with others. If he teaches, he wants to be a good physics teacher, one who makes classes interesting and intriguing. And he wants to relate physics to the real world, applying the concepts in the textbook to actual problems.
Considering the fact that he’s preparing to change the world through Christian service and leadership, perhaps it’s just as well that Keller Andrews ended up at ACU.