Sammie Woodward

Class Year



Franksville, Wis.


Exercise and sport science



“I chose Carthage because I was very intrigued by the student-to-professor ratio because I knew I could have a relationship with my professors and always get help from them when needed. While Carthage is academically challenging, students have many resources to help them be successful.”

Sammie Woodward, ’20

Career goal

“After I graduate from Carthage, I hope to continue my education in exercise physiology/kinesiology. At that time, I will continue working as a personal trainer and work toward becoming a certified strength and conditioning specialist.”

How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?

Professor Cynthia Allen has had an incredible impact on my time at Carthage. Not only has she been one of my professors, but she is also my advisor as well as my mentor! When it comes to having her as a professor, I think she is one of the smartest and most invested leaders I have ever had. I have truly taken so much away from all of her classes and will continue to use the life lessons she has taught me in my future endeavors. I love to go to Prof. Allen for advice because she has done so many amazing things in her life. She is incredibly smart and I trust her with helping me find what my future career plans will be!”

Favorite class

“My favorite class has been Anatomy and Physiology. This has been my favorite class because I am so interested in how our human body moves and functions. I also loved my professor, Linda Greening.”

Campus involvement

“I am a member of the women’s basketball team at Carthage. This has been an amazing experience for me and has helped me get very involved at Carthage. I am a member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, which is a great way to stay involved with other sports on campus as well as volunteer throughout the community. I am also a personal trainer in Carthage’s recreation center. I love being able to help students and faculty reach their fitness goals.”

Toughest class

“The toughest class I have had at Carthage is Exercise Physiology. This class had a lot of information to digest; however, it got easier as the semester went on and I knew how to study for the information.”

Internships or on-campus employment

“I have had three internships so far. My first internship was in the summer of 2018. I spent this summer as a personal training intern at Legacy Gym MKE. During this time, I taught a lot of group fitness classes, directed the youth performance workouts and observed personal training sessions.

“My second internship was during the spring of 2019 at Marquette University. I spent the spring as a strength and conditioning intern with Marquette University athletics and their strength coaches. During this time, I assisted with set up, team workouts, and clean up. I learned so much and felt extremely honored to have this opportunity.

My third internship was at The Prairie School as the strength and conditioning intern. I spent this time creating workout plans and directing athletes through their training sessions. I have had some of the best leaders and role models throughout all of my internships and consider myself extremely blessed to have the opportunities that I have had.”

Opportunities at Carthage

“One of the best opportunities I have had at Carthage is the privilege to play on the women’s basketball team. Being part of a team is something I have always loved, and I am grateful I get this opportunity at Carthage. It’s a great experience to be able to travel and play the game I love with some awesome people!”


“I receive several grants which include the Director’s Grant, Robert Todd Grant, Tri-County Grant, and the Trustee Grant. I also receive Carthage Highest Honors Scholarship.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“One memory that really sticks out in my head is when some of us athletes played in the Special Olympics basketball game at school. It was such an amazing experience to be a part of this game. Homecomings are always a great time on campus because everyone is out and about and school spirit is so high!”

Favorite spot on campus

“Other than the Tarble Arena where I get to play my basketball games, my favorite spot on campus is the outdoor tables located outside of the Hedberg Library. This is my favorite spot because it has a beautiful view of Lake Michigan, and it is also a place where you are sure to run into several of your friends walking to class. Every time I sit there to do my homework or enjoy my lunch, I end up running into friends or professors and get to have a good conversation with them.”

Biggest surprise so far

“The biggest surprise I have encountered is how many new people I meet at Carthage every year. When I initially decided to come to Carthage for school, I thought it was going to be so small that I would know everyone I encountered. However, that is far from the truth. Every year I meet new people in classes, clubs, and all around campus.”

What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?

“My eight-year-old self would say: ‘You like working out that much that you want to make a career out of it?!’ I would explain to my eight-year-old self that a career in strength and conditioning is much more than just ‘working out’ or ‘helping people work out.’ There is a huge personal and social aspect that comes with the career. It’s about helping people reach their goals and motivating them to do better every day. It is a tough career that will not only challenge me but will force me to see a better version of myself every day. I am up for the challenge, and I think my eight-year-old self would be right on board with it.”

Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?

“I would tell future EXSS students to keep their options open when considering their future career. Freshmen in college often change their mind about what they want to do for the rest of their lives, and that is okay! There are so many career paths that students can take with an EXSS major. All of them are great careers, and I think students should get into the core of their classes before setting their mind on a specific career.”

Why Carthage?

“I chose Carthage for several reasons. I love how beautiful the campus is and how it is located between Chicago and Milwaukee. This gives students so many opportunities for internships and jobs in big cities.

“I also chose Carthage because I wanted to have the opportunity to play basketball in front of my family. Carthage has beautiful athletic facilities and an amazing basketball program, so I saw it as a great fit for me to excel athletically.”