Currently, I am completing a one-year research fellowship in orthopedics at UPMC and will begin the fourth year of my medical school training next July.
This is a bit ironic because I used to hate school. Past: My parents were so proud of me when I wanted to test into the gifted and talented program in second grade. They didn't know it was because of a cute girl. Surprisingly, I did quite well and was granted access to this unknown world of academics. But like the great emergence of the cicada, I would not apply myself again for another 13-17 years. Lol. I have always been interested in puzzles, games, and tinkering around with tools. Naturally, the sciences peaked my interests just enough to provoke flashes of my academic potential. I now realize that it was the rigid and non-personalized structure of education that caused me to feel so disenfranchised about learning (at least in the formal sense). From first grade to my sophomore year in college, I invested just enough effort to pass my courses. However, my love for problem solving and logistics allowed me to excel in subjects involving objective learning and assessment (math, science, etc.); that is, when I showed up to class. My greatest achievement in my early education was having earned 64 referrals to the dean in one semester in seventh grade. I failed 5 classes in my sophomore year of high school because I simply did not show up. There were many moments in which my ability to graduate on time was highly uncertain. Athletics eventually afforded me admission to college, where I played football for the University of Utah. However, a lifetime of non-existent academic work ethic culminated with dropping out from my university after two years with a 1.9 gpa. I had hoped for a future NFL career, but once again academics got in the way of my happiness. After dropping out and returning home, I soon learned the value of education while bouncing between jobs over the next 2 years. I decided to finish my degree, taking one class at a time at a community college. I had to learn how to study from scratch since I had never done so before. It was tough, but I developed strategies to simplify the material for understanding rather than memorization. Soon thereafter, I began tutoring classmates before exams, helping them understand concepts they had previously struggled with. Eventually, I enrolled into a 4-year university in hopes of pursuing my newly acquired interest in academics and medicine. Desperation revealed my passion. My passion nurtured discipline. By the time I completed my coursework at ACU, I had tutored a multitude of subjects, graduated magna cum laude with university honors, earning a B.S. in Biology and Chemistry. The only difference between me then and me now is knowing my passions and desires in life and being aware that one's experience with education, like anything else, is completely dependent upon the exposures and teachers. I teach for true knowledge and hope my story inspires others to learn without limits.
Undergraduate Degree: Abilene Christian University - Bachelor of Science, Biology, General
Graduate Degree: Texas A&M Health Science Center - Doctor of Medicine, Sports Medicine
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