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Maggie Fiore, Mount St. Mary's Class of 2017

Lives of Significance

Maggie Fiore, C'17

Confidence to Succeed

Magdalyn “Maggie” Fiore, C’17, is someone you don’t easily forget. She possesses a sharp sense of humor and a contagious fascination about nature’s effortlessly simple, yet intricate, beauty.

Maggie, who majored in psychology, writes in a clear, distinctive tone. Her Mount professors noticed and encouraged her to develop her voice through various research papers, presentations and reports—often calling her a good writer.

“I never thought about myself as a writer,” Maggie says. “But hearing them say it and seeing them write it on my papers gave me confidence.” With a seemingly endless curiosity about all-things-psychology, Maggie’s research fueled her writing and connected her to an interested audience.

Getting Published

Her first piece, a column she co-wrote with Assistant Professor of Psychology, Jonathan Slezak, Ph.D., was published in the International Honor Society in Psychology’s Psi Chi Magazine. In her premiere piece, Maggie wrote about something she has lived with and knows intimately, spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a genetic disorder where a person’s muscles are abnormally weak and degenerate over time—often causing the individual to require mobility assistance.

Her ability to write gracefully about SMA displayed the unique talent her professors had seen: the vigor necessary to make an audience pay attention and the clarity of expression and understanding to elicit learning.

“I am thankful for my disease, in part because it has led me to psychology and science writing simply by closing doors, for physical reasons, to other career goals I’ve had growing up,” she says. While Maggie says she might have pursued a career in ballet or figure skating, she’s excited to continue learning and writing. “My one true love is psychology, though. I really want to write for a platform that would allow me the joy of explaining advances in psychology to lay audiences.”

Where Science Meets Art

Today Maggie lives in Westminster, Maryland, and is pursuing a Master of Arts in science writing at Johns Hopkins University. Her most recent article was just accepted for publication by BrainFacts.org, and her love of psychology has led to her current scientific research on mirror neurons, which, if they exist in humans, could relate to empathy and altruism.

“I’m thrilled about what the future has in store for me and entirely grateful to the friends and family I’ve made at the Mount who have given me unyielding support and have gotten me to where I am today,” she says. “I used to be somewhat fearful of failure and insecurity in terms of my ability to perform well and succeed. My time at the Mount has taught me, though, that failure is going to happen and imperfection is going to fill me with feelings of shame but none of that is any reflection of what I am capable of or what my future will look like. You can fail at something and still be good at it.”