Katherine S.

Graduate Recipient

"Name someone who has been a source of inspiration and support to you as you navigate your journey with CF, and describe this inspiration and support. This role model could be anyone, whether it is a public figure, someone else with CF, and advocate in the CF community, a personal mentor, family member or friend. As part of your essay, please also explain the significance of your creative presentation to your journey with CF."

A person who has deeply inspired and supported me, in both ways, is my doctor Joan DeCelie-Germana. I have been with her since I was a child and along the way she has repeatedly reinforced that I am control of my CF and not the other way around. She has been my biggest cheerleader, encouraging me to play sports, to run and exercise and to be responsible for my own health care routine at an early age. Whenever I was sick, or my baseline lung function decreased, she would tell me what she thought was the best course of action, and then discuss with me the best way to implement it. She always included me in the plan, which gave me my voice as my own, and best, advocate for my health. Through the years, when my health faltered, she was always there to point out the positive things with the negative I was facing. She has helped me see that because I have cystic fibrosis, and I have struggled at times, I appreciate the good things in life more. My life has been enhanced by my struggle.

My creative presentation represents my slow realization that having cystic fibrosis isn't the horrible thing one might think. It is 'bothersome' at times but ultimately makes me a stronger person. Without the bees, the flowers would not bloom as beautiful.


Katherine S.'s Artwork

Katherine S.'s Achievements

  • Cystic Fibrosis Foundation: Volunteer, Great Strides (Team Leader), CF Row (Event Organizer)
  • SAAC (Student Athlete Advisory Council) Health and Wellness Committee, APPLE Conference-Grapevine TX (substance abuse prevention in collegiate athletes)
  • Pennsylvania Adaptive Rowing Volunteer (2015/2016) Bayada Regatta, and weekly rows with disabled rowers
  • University of Delaware Women's Rowing (2016, 2015, 2014, 2013)
  • University of Delaware Honors Program- Exercise Science Major with Concentration in Kinesiology
  • University of Delaware Athletics Volunteering: Food Bank, Special Olympics, Polar Plunge
  • Boomer Esiason Foundation Volunteer- Empire Challenge, fundraising: NYC Half Marathon, CF Run to Breathe, and March 2016 Athlete of the Month
  • PNC Bank Student Athlete Achievement Award -2016
  • Mary Whipple Award 2015- USRowing