On Friday, October 27, Kiah Hicks was inducted into the CSU Athletics Hall of Fame for Women’s Track and Field (2011-15). She excelled in the throws events and was a member of the 2015 MW Outdoor Championship team. Hicks won four conference titles and maintained a strong academic career. In 2015, she won the Thurman “Fum” McGraw Award for outstanding academic and athletic excellence, character, leadership, service, and Ram pride.
Kiah got her undergraduate degree in Chemistry at CSU before going to UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy at UNC-Chapel Hill. She has gone on to become St. Mary’s Coumadin Clinic Supervisor and anticoagulation Pharmacist at Intermountain Healthcare. Kiah says she was able to balance her impressive athletic career and her studies in part due to a supportive Faculty saying, “I’m glad I became a Chemistry major because of the great Faculty, and the principles I learned here really helped me through Pharmacy School’s toughest courses.”
One of Kiah’s former professors, Nancy Levinger, was quoted in a 2015 SOURCE article as saying, “I’m so impressed with her ability to balance a very challenging and intense major at the same time as being a top-class athlete,” Levinger said. “It’s one thing to do athletics – I was one for four years – but it’s another to compete at the highest level. I wasn’t winning Mountain West titles and setting conference records the way Kiah has done.” Eight years later Professor Levinger has this to add, “I continue to have that level of awe for Kiah. After graduating from CSU, she continued her studies in Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. In itself, getting into this highly competitive program (it was ranked 1 or 2 in the nation!) is noteworthy. That Kiah’s talent in science took her easily through the tough program there is no surprise. Kiah was an inspiring student, and she continues to impress and inspire since graduating.”
Kiah enjoys the prestige of being a STEM major. Her father was a biochemist and her mother was a nurse growing up. She remembers going to the lab with her dad and doing at-home chemistry experiments with him. Kiah feels she was better prepared for the Pharmacy program at UNC-Chapel Hill by starting out with a Chemistry major. From her research in Professor Emeritus Ellen Fisher’s lab with a focus on Plasmas to her coursework. She fondly remembers taking Organic Chemistry with former CSU Professor Tomislav Rovis and Physical Chemistry with Professor Nancy Levinger. She wishes she spent more time and energy meeting other athletes in the community during her time at CSU, but she wouldn’t change anything else.