Street: What is your spirit animal?
KT: My teammate Paige Lombard said, “I think a kangaroo, because you look like Roo from Pooh Bear, and kangaroo begins with a K for Kalijah. And they're so springy and quick, and you're so springy and quick!”
Street: Your nickname is Kiki. Do you identify at all, then, with the song “Let’s Have a Kiki?”
Kalijah Terilli: Yes! You’ve heard of that? I showed that song to my teammates recently!
Street: What advice would you give to your freshman-year self?
KT: Life is too short for Banker's and Cup Noodles. Ingest things that don't make you gag. Eat more crepes.
Street: What’s better, Blarney Stone or Smokey Joe's?
KT: Blarney. There is no better moment than singing Celine Dion with years of PWS (Ed. note: Penn Women’s Soccer) alumni in Blarney after Homecoming.
Street: What’s your favorite Celine Dion song to sing?
KT: “It’s All Coming Back.” We belt it every year, and we bang on the walls of Blarney. It’s kind of the team’s song. We sing it in the locker room on Senior Night, too.
Street: What’s the hardest part of being goalkeeper?
KT: Knowing that any mistake I make is a goal. There’s more opportunity to try stuff out or take chances in other positions. As goalkeeper, I’m kind of the last hope. But I really like it. When people need you, and you can come to the rescue, that’s the best feeling ever.
Street: Who is your favorite goalkeeper?
KT: Tim Howard (Ed. note: Goalie for U.S. Men's Team). Tim Howard for President!
Street: When were you on the Jamaica women’s national team? How did that experience differ from Penn Women’s Soccer?
KT: This past Spring was the first time I went to a camp with the Jamaica team. It was a very different team dynamic. Half of the team was from Jamaica, and the other half was from the U.S. and Canada. The experience was more of me learning about Jamaican culture. I grew up with my mom, who is entirely Italian, so I had never been exposed to any of it. It was really cool to learn that side of myself, especially the dancing!
Street: What was the major highlight of playing for Jamaica?
KT: Kristie Mewis from the U.S. Women's National Team scored on me, which on the one hand was unfortunate but also pretty cool.
Street: If you are what you eat, what are you?
KT: Probably cantaloupe. It's kind of a family joke that my mom thinks about cantaloupe like the father in My Big Fat Greek Wedding thinks about Windex—she says it can fix anything. So I always grab some before a test or a game if I can.
Street: If you had to choose between eating olives (your guilty pleasure) or cantaloupe (your food persona) for the rest of your life, which one would you choose?
KT: Olives, for sure. I can’t explain why, but it’s my favorite thing. When my mom comes for a holiday, she’ll always bring me olives. It’s the best thing that someone could give me.
Street: There are two types of people at Penn….
KT: People who groutfit and people who bluefit.
Street: Have you ever been guilty of wearing a groutfit or bluefit?
KT: Yeah, but I embrace it. When spring season comes along and we have morning practices before school, it’s pretty much all I wear for weeks at a time. That’s what happens when the team gives you a lot of free stuff for four years!
Street: What cheers you up when you’re having a bad day?
KT: When someone texts me out nowhere to grab dinner or something. It’s nice to know that someone’s thinking about me!
Street: What research do you conduct at Kable lab?
KT: It’s a neuroeconomics lab, and although I don’t know anything about Econ, I saw this position as a good way to get in the industry. The lab focuses on the neuroscience of decision making, like monetary decisions. I help run fMRI (Ed. note: Functional magnetic resonance imaging) studies and test new software and equipment, and then I train other people on how to use them.
Street: Do you have a current project at the lab?
KT: I just finished working on software what uses eye tracking. We were using glasses, which is a new technology since most studies involving eye tracking have subjects sitting in place. Instead, we had people walk around a mock grocery store and try to pick different products. I coded it all, which was pretty grueling.
Street: What is your go-to snack when you’re pulling an all-nighter?
KT: Peach rings and a full jar of Nutella.
Street: Who was your first celebrity crush?
KT: Chris Brown… but I hate him now. I also like Zachary Levi from Chuck. He’s a little nerdy but also really hot!
Street: Do you have any hidden talents?
KT: I can juggle!
Street: SHOW US.
KT: I’ll save it for the Ego GIF.
This interview has been edited and condensed.