NHS twins conquer academics, athletics together
06 Apr 2015
Anyone with a sibling will tell you that it can be one of both the best and worst relationships in their lives, at any given moment. Sibling rivalry, shared experiences, family memories… it all comes together to create a story that influences our entire lives. For twin sisters Amanda and Jennifer Lauer, that influence has been a very positive one.
The Lauers have spent their lives competing with and encouraging one another. They started gymnastics together when they were five years old. In high school, they joined the same club team. When choosing a college, they made it a priority to find a school that felt right not only for themselves, but for each other.
“We’d been coming to gymnastics camps at UNL for years, and when it came time to choose a school we really couldn’t picture ourselves at any other college,” said Amanda. “We were lucky that Nebraska wanted both of us, and that felt like the perfect fit for us… How they were really focused on developing us as a person and not just an athlete—that kind of sealed the deal for us.”
Now poised to graduate with Nutrition Science degrees in May and go on to physical therapy school at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, the girls are once again taking their next steps together.
“I couldn’t imagine not being with her,” said Jennifer. Amanda agrees. “I feel like I’d be calling her 10 times a day if we weren’t together,” she laughed.
Their closeness isn’t unusual, of course. But combine that tight-knit relationship with the fact that both girls chose the same major, competed in the same sport and are now following the same career path, and bystanders may wonder if there have been tense moments between the sisters.
“Being a twin you’re always going to have some kind of competition, and we both grew up trying to beat each other,” said Jennifer. “But when you come to college you compete for a team. We became teammates. We’re not big rivals now—we’re in it together and we want each other to succeed.”
And succeed they have. Both sisters have earned academic and athletic honors during their tenure at UNL, and their GPAs are nearly perfect despite balancing a rigorous course of study with their responsibilities as athletes. Aside from their obvious dedication and passion for what they do, the two say part of their success has come from having very supportive professors in the Department of Nutrition and Health Sciences.
“They’re always telling us that we can come to them if we need anything,” said Amanda. “They get to know you as a person and not just a student. They really want you to succeed.”
“It’s also been really great because our teachers have done a good job at making their material applicable to the real world,” added Jennifer. “It’s not just by the textbook here.”
Amanda and Jennifer will head to PT school in the fall, together as usual. Despite their attachment, however, they’re both certain that they’re following the path that’s right for them as individuals. They’ve taken great care to protect their own goals and desires over the years, and this step was no different.
“When we made our list of PT schools we wanted to go to, we did it separately,” said Jennifer. “But when we came together, our top five schools were almost the exact same... We are doing the same path, but it’s because we each individually, that’s really what we want to do.”
Nutrition and Health Sciences