What inspired you to go to medical school?
Attending medical school was not a thought I had growing up. When I was 19 years old, after a semester of college, I moved to Spain to serve a two-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. During this time, I taught people my beliefs as a Mormon, but more importantly I had the opportunity to serve and love the people of Spain. This was when I decided that I wanted to go to medical school. Serving people all day, every day for two years opened my eyes to the hurt and heartache in the world, and I wanted to be able to help in the best way I could. I love being around people and have a love for learning and saw that medicine was an excellent path to take in order to practice what I love.
What are / were your role models in medicine?
While not in the field of medicine, my oldest brother has been a role model to me. I grew up in a large family, I am the fourth of six children. After only a semester in college, my brother dropped out and began to spend all his time and money into a company he had started. It was not easy but he believed in his company and was able to sell it for 2 million dollars, five years later. My brother has taught me that is more important to be a hard worker than to be talented. In the many endeavors I engaged since high school, I strived to live by this principle. Although not a natural in the field of medicine, I have been successful to this point through hard work.
What is your favorite thing about UTHealth?
Having never been in Houston before my interview day, I cannot say UTHealth was my first choice. This quickly changed as I saw the immense medical center and began to meet many of the students here at the school. My favorite thing about UTHealth is the sense of community that I’ve felt since coming here. From faculty (especially Dr. Mark Chassay), to the many students in my class. I feel that everyone is invested in helping those around them to succeed and feel welcome. This is something that I find special about UTHealth.