Kelleigh Staples ’27 | Missoula, Montana
Major/Minor: Applied Physics (Pre-Engineering); Mathematics

Please tell us about yourself.

I’m from Missoula, Montana. I’m studying physics on the pre-engineering track. When home, I live with my parents, little sister, and three huskies that we rescued. I am very family oriented and enjoy spending my time outdoors with them. I enjoy attending the local farmers market during the summer, floating on the river, visiting Glacier National Park, concerts at the KettleHouse Amphitheater, and cheering on the local university.

How did you hear about Concordia?

I heard about Concordia from some of the grads who are located around the Missoula area and, of course, through the mail with pamphlets and finally through the head coach of women’s soccer, Rebecca Quimby, reaching out for me to come on a visit.

Why did you choose Concordia?

I chose Concordia because the area really reminds me of home — without the mountains, of course. The sense of community that surrounds the campus and students was just a huge draw for me. The campus is also very cute and homey, which is perfect for someone like me who likes a smaller town feel.

What has been the biggest adjustment and how did you overcome that?

I think two of my biggest adjustments were the lack of mountains just because I’ve grown up around mountains from when I lived in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, to living in Missoula. Another big adjustment was realizing I can’t just go home for a quick weekend like most people at Concordia. I know though that being “forced,” if you will, to stay on campus has led to so much growth because it made me become acclimated to living on my own and finding things to do without relying on my family for everything.

What surprised you most about Concordia and/or the Fargo-Moorhead community?

The thing that surprised me most was how nice and welcoming everyone has been. I don’t think I can have a single interaction with someone and not feel like I had a good hearty conversation, which I absolutely love.

Are you involved in any campus activities? What have you enjoyed the most?

I’m on the women’s soccer team here at Concordia and I love it so much. They have been nothing but kind and welcoming even from the time of my visit when I wasn’t 100% on going to Concordia. I wouldn’t trade the experience I’ve had so far with my team for anything!

I wouldn’t trade the experience I’ve had so far with my team for anything!”

How did you decide on your area of study?

The plan/dream for me has always been to go into mechanical engineering, so when I saw that Concordia had the program with NDSU I was super excited because I knew I was going to get a good education from both schools.

What course are you most looking forward to and why?

I am really looking forward to all the physics classes because I love the subjects and dealing with formulas and numbers.

What are your career goals?

My career goal is to first graduate with a degree in mechanical engineering, but then I would like to transition into the workforce using my degree to help the public. I would eventually like to be able to work from home in order to start a family.

What do you love most about being a Cobber?

I think my favorite thing about being a Cobber is the sense of Cobber pride everyone feels and has.

What advice would you give to a Montana student who is considering Concordia?

My best piece of advice would be to trust your gut. It’s there for a reason and, for me at least, it tends to be right more times than not so take note when you feel a certain way whether that’s on campus when you’re trying to decide if Concordia is for you or just in general with anything in life.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

You’ll always regret not choosing to take a risk, so if you’re on the fence about Concordia take the risk. When you choose to take the risk, you need to be comfortable with the uncomfortable because it is going to be different and you’re going to have hard days but embrace those and push through!

Learn more about Montana to Moorhead admission

Published February 2024