Meredith Forcier ’20
For Meredith Forcier ’20 (BS Biomedical Engineering/International and Global Studies; MS Management), the truth is self-evident. As a high school senior, her list of potential colleges was deep, yet her parents consistently pointed out that WPI seemed to be a perfect fit. Originally applying simply to appease them, Forcier then attended an overnight program on campus and later took part in the Accepted Student Day event, when her gut told her that her parents were right.
“I can’t say it was one specific thing that brought me to WPI, but rather it was a feeling. I felt the sense of community and passion students had for the school and all that it encompasses,” she recalls.
Based on that gut reaction, a deposit was made and a home was created for the next four years. “While it sounds clichéd, I chose WPI for the community and I stayed for the same reason,” she admits. “I have always felt supported, challenged, and welcomed by my peers and professors alike.”
Her biomedical engineering track was influenced by another family member—her grandmother, who’d been diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. Forcier says that her grandmother’s yearlong battle inspired her to focus within the healthcare industry, with the goal of “working toward a future with less disease and more life,” she says.
Her interest in International and Global Studies stems from her love of travel, and her awareness that her work should keep a global mindset thread throughout.
“Pursuing an MBA is something I knew I wanted to do after working for a few years,” she says, “and when I learned that WPI had an alternative track to an MBA through an MS in Management, I jumped at this opportunity.”
With hopes of integrating a business approach to her work in healthcare, Forcier says her MS work has helped her develop teamworking skills and helped manage projects and groups more efficiently. It has her thinking in more cross-functional ways than ever before.
When asked to reflect upon the most challenging aspects of WPI, she admits that after excelling in high school, learning to embrace failure was her biggest impediment in her first year. “I failed one of my first tests, and I learned more from that failure than any test I ever previously aced,” she confesses. “I learned that it is okay to not know everything, because that is how we grow, and I also realized all of the support that I was surrounded by allowed me to improve and grow, moving forward.”
A key aspect to her time at WPI has been the guidance found through the Trustee Mentor Program, where she was able to make important connections and gain insight into future roles. “Joan Bolduc Szkutak ’79 has been an incredible mentor and inspiration to me, and I know she will continue to be a great resource for support and guidance after I graduate.”
The support system of Forcier’s Phi Sigma Sigma sisters has proven invaluable as well. She says she’s shared common values with them—and has given and received support when needed. “There is also a great camaraderie between the fraternities and sororities on this campus. Everyone does such great work for the community and supports each other in these causes.”
Her most cherished time at WPI has come full circle in the community that attracted her in the first place. “It might be hard to believe from an outsider’s perspective,” she says, “but truly I think it’s what makes WPI so special. There are many aspects that build the caring community—including the dedicated faculty and staff, and the unique curriculum structure supported by the WPI Plan.”
Resident Advisor • Colleges Against Cancer • Phi Sigma Sigma • Trustee Mentor Program• Crimson Key • Student Support Network