Video Feature: The CMS-ence of Ellery Koelker-Wolfe

Video Feature: The CMS-ence of Ellery Koelker-Wolfe

CLAREMONT, Calif. - Senior Ellery Koelker-Wolfe has accomplished plenty with the CMS women's basketball team over her first three seasons, including being a part of three SCIAC regular season titles, two SCIAC tournament titles, and two NCAA Division III Tournament wins. 

Off the court, she hopes to accomplish even more. 

An Academic All-SCIAC honoree as a biochemistry major, Koelker-Wolfe recently completed her senior thesis, which is titled "On the right TRAC: Using CRISPR-Cas9 to engineer iPSCs for an off-the-shelf CAR T cell therapy." The motivation for her thesis subject came from this past summer, where she stayed 3000 miles from her Atlanta home to conduct research on cancer therapy at City of Hope National Medical Center in Duarte, California. The goal of the research is to help improve the human body's immune system's ability to fight cancer cells. 

Balancing a successful athletic career and doing significant scientific research as a lab science major might seem difficult, but Koelker-Wolfe feels that she has no trouble making it work. "I always tell everyone about how rewarding the Division III experience is," she said. "I wasn't really a Division I prospect or anything, but trying to play at most Division I schools means you can forget about trying to be a biochemistry major. Here you can fit in your lab time and your practice time, and not feel like you are sacrificing either one."

Being a part of the CMS women's basketball program has made her college experience rewarding as well, but she doesn't reference all the wins and the multiple championships as the biggest reason why. 

"Being an Athena has meant the world to me," said Koelker-Wolfe. "I love my teammates; we have so much fun together. We've experienced joy and pain and growth and everything in between. I say this all the time, but they're the sisters I've never had." 

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