On the Road With CU Road Runners President Stefan Kim CC’24

Thursday, May 30, 2024
Stefan Kim CC’24

Emma Asher

Stefan Kim CC’24 (him/he) is president of Columbia University Road Runners, a club that provides opportunities for races and fun group activities for runners of all abilities. Kim, who is from Apex, N.C., is a physics major with a concentration in biology.

How did you get involved with CU Road Runners?

I ran throughout high school, but during my freshman year at the College I was running on my own in my hometown, since we were all remote due to Covid-19. I really missed the social aspect of group running, so that led me to look for running clubs at Columbia [when we came back in-person]. And that’s how I found CU Road Runners! I applied to be on the board entering my sophomore year and I’ve been involved since.

What would you like other students to know about the club?

It’s really whatever you want it to be! We provide a ton of opportunities to run with people and to do races and other fun events. If you’re super invested in running then you can come to our daily runs and do all of our races and really immerse yourself in our community. If you’re a super-casual runner or a beginner, you can just come to the more chill social events and use them as a way to have running as a casual social hobby. Whatever kind of runner you are, we welcome you, and you will be able to find others who fit into your training plans or running goals.

What is your favorite memory from your time with CU Road Runners?

When we all traveled to Scarsdale and ran a race there. I thought that was really nice; we took the train and it was in a neighborhood I had never been to before. It was like combining a weekend trip with friends and a competitive race, so it was really fun.

What’s been your favorite class at the College, and why?

That’s a hard question! But with a little bit of recency bias, I choose a seminar I took last semester about antimicrobial resistance, taught by Dr. Franklin Lowy [’68, VPS’72]. We studied specific outbreaks of bacterial infections throughout the United States, how infections spread around the world and how different types of bacteria grow resistance to commercially available antibiotics. We also talked about the common things that cause these resistances to arise, and what we can do — both individually and as a community — to help slow the spread of antimicrobial resistance and the steps we can take for better health and safety, both locally and on a national scale.

What do you like to do outside of class?

I’m a huge baseball nerd. I don’t play anymore, but I still love to watch the games. And I’m involved in the Columbia University Society for Baseball Research. It’s a very nerdy club; we talk about statistics and do in-depth analytics about what’s going on in baseball.

How do you like to take advantage of being in New York City?

I think people overlook the parks and the greenways, and a great part of the Road Runners is how everything in New York is within running distance. We have so many parks, and they provide opportunities to get to specific locations — whether local shops or touristy destinations — without having to run through a ton of roads and crossroads. Using Central Park or Riverside Park, we can get to some really cool destinations.

Outside of Road Runners, my friends and I love to go to all-you-can-eat restaurants. I really loved Gen Korean BBQ House, on the Lower East Side, where we went recently. We’ve been trying to hit spots all around the city.

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