The Citadel

The Military College of South Carolina


Sharon Stortz

Corps Grad ’02

Sharon StortzSharon attended The Citadel as a Citadel Scholar with funding from the Class of 1939, for which she is very grateful. She majored in biology and ran cross-country and track, serving as cross-country captain her senior year. After graduation, she commissioned in the Navy and served 10 years as a Navy pilot before heading to medical school. She is now finishing her 4th year of medical school at the University of California, San Francisco, and after graduation she will start her Navy residency in obstetrics and gynecology.

What about your time at The Citadel had the most positive impact on your career or life?
My time at The Citadel taught me that sometimes you need to create your own opportunities; you may not have any personal connections to the network you find yourself in, or you may not know the next step to take in the path you want to follow, but that's ok! Reach out to people, look for opportunities to excel and to choose your path. I learned to work hard, adhere to high standards, and to not fear being different. These lessons have helped shaped my personal and professional life, especially returning to medical school as an older student with a family!

My experience at The Citadel taught me resiliency. The class system and collegiate running both taught me determination and focus in the face of obstacles, and equally important, how to recover from setbacks. I also learned the importance of adhering to a core set of values and upholding a duty to others. These lessons have served me well as a military officer taking care of people working for me, as a pilot working with a crew, and now when talking with patients or working with a medical team.

Why should young women consider attending The Citadel?
The Citadel is a great school for those women who want a different college experience than most of their friends, for women who want to be challenged both mentally and physically in ways women aren't usually challenged in society. At times, it's a difficult path, but anything worth doing will usually be difficult. The lessons you learn in leadership, perseverance, and duty to others will serve you well in life.

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