Maggie Grisell, Furman University Student

Maggie Grisell '16

Hometown: Indialantic, Florida

Major: Computer Science and Mathematics

By her own admission, Maggie Grisell failed to reach any of the goals she set for herself when she arrived at Furman. And that couldn’t have worked out any better.

A high school soccer star, Grisell was intent on winning the starting goalkeeper job she eventually lost to fellow freshman Rose Hull. The competitive mindset also had her determined to “get the best grades” in the classroom, and when that also didn’t work out, Grisell was forced to examine herself like never before.

“You come in, and say, I’m a soccer player. You define yourself by that, which only works for so long, and freshman year was really humbling for me. I did really well, but Rose was very, very good. So when I was a step behind her, it really was the first time I had truly failed,” Grisell said. “I had to step back and say you know what? It’s OK to get a B.”

This new outlook allowed Grisell to form deep relationships with her teammates, including Rose, who became her best friend, and give up the biology or chemistry major she thought she had to have to get into the medical field in favor of math, something she actually liked.

“I just had the wrong mindset,” she said. “Once I figured out it’s more about the process of learning rather than the grade, I think that’s what’s helped me excel in the classroom.”

So much so that she is now in her first year of dental school at Lake Erie College of Medicine in Florida. “I feel like I came in as an athlete, and I left whole,” Grisell said. “It’s my first time as a NARP—a non-athletic regular person—and I am embracing the NARP lifestyle. It is awesome!”