Ashtyn Perrin

Ashtyn Perrin aspires to become an optometrist and help people with their vision. When she isn’t busy studying, Ashtyn enjoys going on walks, drinking coffee, and practicing yoga and boxing.

Get to know Ashtyn

  • Major/minor: Kinesiology and health
  • Class: Senior
  • Hometown: Carroll, Iowa (Carroll County)
  • Career goal: Optometrist
  • Clubs/activities: Student Admissions Representative (STARS)
  • Awards/honors/scholarships: President’s Award for Competitive Excellence, Cardinal Leadership Scholarship
  • Favorite place on campus: The Student Innovation Center
  • Most influential ISU mentors: Bruce Allen and Marsha Wissink
  • Favorite class: BIOL 255L, Fundamentals of Human Anatomy Laboratory
  • Why Iowa State: The human connection

Ashtyn Perrin discovers dreams of becoming an optometrist through research efforts

Ashtyn Perrin discovered her interest in ophthalmology, a branch of medicine that deals with eye disorders, when she assisted Lionel Sebbag in the ophthalmology department of the Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Originally coming in with a different major and deciding to switch multiple times, Ashtyn’s research efforts in the ophthalmology department solidified her choice to declare kinesiology.

It was there that she aided in research investigating tear production in beagles, specifically looking into how inflammation of the eyelid effects tear production. Although she is interested in working with humans, the experience is one she will always remember.

“Though I will not be working with animals in my future path, I felt it was a similar enough experience where I could explore my interest, and Dr. Sebbag was very gracious in letting me help,” Ashtyn said. “It turned out to be hands-down the coolest opportunity and experience, and I am beyond grateful.”

Outside of her research experience, Ashtyn is heavily involved on campus and has held multiple on-campus jobs since her freshman year of college. She has worked in the Environmental Health and Safety office, the Office of Sorority and Fraternity Engagement, in New Student Programs, and as a 2020 Cyclone Aide.

“I love working on campus. I love to talk about Iowa State. It’s nice being able to have experiences in an office setting and being able to understand what it will be like for my future,” Ashtyn said.

Ashtyn’s Iowa State adventure has been one of personal growth and discovery.

“From the moment I checked in that morning [on my first tour] until the moment I buckled myself back into the car at the end of the day, every person I interacted with made me feel like I would be an important part of the ISU community,” Ashtyn said.

From transitioning to a new major (kinesiology and health) to realizing it’s okay to ask for help when needed, she has come a long way and is looking forward to continuing to dive deeper into her passions.

“Not every class will be your best, and it’s okay to ask for help and admit that you’re struggling. If you don’t let anyone know that you aren’t doing okay, then no one will know or be able to offer you help,” she said.

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