“The thing about Kristen that has always really struck me is that nothing gets in her way.”
— Katie Barta
Kristen Campbell is a Gustie who strives to include everyone around her. She is very enthusiastic about helping others.
“[She’s] always looking out for other people,” Junior Dawn Comstock said.
Kristen is able to fulfill this calling through her involvement with the Gustie Greeters, looking for those that need help. She dislikes seeing people on the edge.
Kristin is involved with Big Partner Little Partner, is a Chapel Apprentice and works at the Tennis Center in addition to being a “Greeter Mom” as the Gustie Greeter coordinator.
“Greeters is definitely what I’m most passionate about at Gustavus,” she said. “I like to think of it as a family.”
The welcome that Kristen had upon arrival at Gustavus is something that she seeks to give to others.
She loves that people are able to fit in and are welcome at Gustavus, and she believes that being a Greeter allows her to make new friends with incoming first-years and gives them an upperclassman role model.
For her, Gustavus was always the right choice because it felt like home when she attended Tennis and Life Camp.
“I feel like myself at Gustavus,” she said.
The friends that she has made here describe her as a wonderfully caring and generous woman.
“[She] is such a wonderful person,” Junior Katie Barta said. “She’s cheerful, supportive and inspirational.”
This positive attitude proved to be extremely important in remaining optimistic when she was diagnosed with Lymphoma last year. She had always felt that Gustavus cared about each one of their students, and when she received an outpouring of support she really felt like she was loved.
“You’re not a number; you’re actually cared about,” she said.
Kristen was soon making a connection with nurses and doctors as she underwent treatment, and is truly thankful for the support that she received from friends, professors and even strangers on Facebook and her CaringBridge page.
She realized how compassionate and including the Gustavus community is. Even when diagnosed, Kristen was able to look on the bright side of things, something that her friends admire about her.
“The thing about Kristen that has always really struck me is that nothing gets in her way. She never reacts badly to things. She always just handles it,” Barta said.
Kristen will be speaking about her experience at Relay for Life this year as a survivor, as well as joining Kristen’s Krew, the team that relayed in her honor last year.
She believes that speaking will be very rewarding. The support she received from people she didn’t know was something that really helped her and she looks forward to getting that out.
“She’s been through a lot but always has such a great attitude,” Comstock said.
Kristen’s experience has led her to help other cancer patients as well. Soon after completing chemotherapy, she was off in the Boundry Waters on a 200 mile, two week canoe trip to raise money for First Descents, a camp that offers a free outdoor adventure.
Past participants in the camp are asked to complete a physical challenge to fundraise and give back for future participants.
“[Kristen] is a very positive person. Always happy, always smiling,” Comstock said.
Kristen said her experiences have hightened her appreciation for her time at Gustavus and that she will never take it for granted.