Victoria Tappa

Victoria Tappa aspires to one day become a physician. When she isn’t busy studying, Victoria likes to cook, exercise, knit, and learn Spanish through Duolingo. She also enjoys visiting loved ones in her free time. 

Get to know Victoria

  • Major/minor: Nutritional science, pre-health professions and research option
  • Class: Senior 
  • Hometown: Bettendorf, Iowa (Scott County)
  • Career goal: Physician (M.D. or D.O.)
  • Clubs/activities: FSHN Learning Community in 2018, College of Human Sciences Ambassador, Bio 212 LA, Micro 201LLA, Rosenfeld Research Intern
  • Awards/honors/scholarships: Academic Merit, Iowa Farm Bureau Scholarship
  • Favorite place on campus: Advanced Teaching and Research Building 
  • Most influential ISU mentors: Matthew Rowling, Amber Kargol, Peter Clark
  • Favorite class: FSHN 467: Molecular Basis of Nutrition in the Development, Prevention, and Treatment of Disease
  • Why Iowa State: Wanted to attend a university that valued my individuality, educational goals, and personal needs


Victoria Tappa crafts her own adventure at Iowa State, preparing for career as physician 

Victoria Tappa’s passion for nutrition and well-being originated when her grandfather was diagnosed with stomach cancer. The aftermath of his diagnosis and surgery pushed him to follow a healthier diet and inspired the rest of her family to prioritize their health. 

With the knowledge in mind that she’d like to pursue a career in medicine, Victoria quickly discovered Iowa State University’s nutritional science program.

“Nutritional science stood out to me on Iowa State’s course catalog and immediately became a prime contender for the major I would choose. Two years in, and I can confidently say I made the right choice,” she said. 

Victoria’s time at Iowa State thus far has been full of discovery and personal growth. Now a junior, she has found a way to balance her academic priorities and still make time for herself. Realizing that there is no such thing as the “perfect student” has helped shape Victoria’s college experience for the better.

“I learned that it is okay to struggle in college courses, it is okay to give extra attention to a course, it is okay to retake a course, and it is okay to not be perfect,” Victoria said. “Grades and academic performance are surely important, but they do not define your worth, value, or capabilities. Focus on activities and courses that make you happy. Prioritize what is most important to you.” 

Ecstatic for a new year of crafting her own adventure, she is currently looking into undergraduate research opportunities. Outside of new opportunities to get involved in, Victoria holds multiple leadership roles on campus that have helped further equip her for her future career. 

“[Clubs and organizations] prepared me for what it’s like working with a team,” Victoria said. “Human connection goes a long way. My involvement has helped me learn how to work and form relationships with people.”

Victoria is proud of her time as a Cyclone and excited for what the future holds. She credits her college experiences as what has shaped her into the person she is today. 

“Being a Cyclone is about choosing your adventure, regardless of what that adventure may look like — life is dynamic, and I believe Cyclones are adaptable to change,” Victoria said.

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