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The College of Science, Engineering and Technology offers degree programs that prepare students for high-demand professions in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields. With an emphasis on Grand Canyon University’s Christian worldview, our college believes in instilling social awareness, responsibility, ethical character and compassion. Our blog, BrainSTEM, focuses on topics related to science, engineering and technology, with engaging contributions from students, staff and faculty. On the blog, you can find helpful resources relating to STEM fields and learn more about current events occurring globally, locally and within GCU. We hope to provide our readers with information that helps them learn about the necessary knowledge, skills and mental disciplines to succeed in today’s job market.
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The Path to Becoming a Master: My Journey to Graduate School

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By Kyle Simtion
GCU Alum & TSU Graduate Student, Biological Science Department

The smallest distance between two points is a straight line– at least that’s what I learned in math. Unfortunately, life is not as simple when it comes to achieving a goal. That is what I learned during my graduate school application process.

My original plan was to apply to medical school and be accepted in the 2018 entering class. I prepared all of the necessary material and submitted my application on opening day. I managed to get a few secondaries from some interested schools. However, I did not receive a single interview, and as 2017 drew to a close I realized I would need to figure out a plan B should my application process fail.

I decided the best course of action would be to apply to a master’s program and earn a higher degree before reapplying to medical school. I chose five schools, contacted my professors for letters of recommendation, and began studying for the GRE. I began my 5-month study plan and started working on my new personal statement for a master’s program. The general application was relatively simple, and thankfully my former GCU professors were extremely helpful in providing me with letters.

The GRE on the other hand was a tricky test. I did not find it difficult per say, but it did challenge me to remember many vocabulary and mathematical concepts that biology students usually forget after freshman year.

Overall, it was definitely a challenge for me to reroute my plans and thought process. Here I was, an individual who was adamantly set on going to medical school, and I now had to detour my focus. Regardless, I decided to persevere and do everything to get accepted to at least one university. To my amazement, I was accepted to four of the five schools to which I applied. Out of the four, I chose to attend Tennessee State University (TSU). I made this decision because of the excellent program at TSU and the location as well. Not only do I love Nashville and the South in general, but a majority of the medical schools I wish to attend are located in the surrounding states.

It wasn’t easy making the decision to pursue a master’s degree and relocate my life, but I am glad I made this decision. My graduate education is helping me increase my knowledge and prepare for my future. I have also begun research at my university which will strengthen my applications further. My professors are very friendly and excellent at providing me with instruction in the biological field. I didn’t plan on rerouting my journey to medical school and working on a different degree beforehand. However, I understand that God has a plan for my life, and His plan is always perfect. As long as I continue to work hard and trust Him, I will one day get to where I need to be.

More about Kyle Simtion:

Kyle Simtion is a 25-year old biology student currently working on his master’s degree. He comes from a family of Romanians and is fluent in both English and Romanian. His personal hobbies include cooking, hiking, camping and fishing. This past year he moved to Nashville to continue his educational pursuits. Once he obtains his master’s degree he will apply to medical school.

As a student at GCU, Kyle says one of the best parts of his education in CSET was the faculty. “While it was important for me to learn the material in all my classes, the knowledge I gained in each course was greatly due to my professors,” he says. “I found that I learned best from the way my professors taught and was thankful for the ability to seek their help both during class and during office hours.”

For GCU students, Kyle advises, “press through the hard times and work hard to achieve your goal. There will be a lot of times when you feel like giving up and giving in. However, know that everyone who went through the program experienced the same struggles and emotions. Take it from someone who has been where you currently are, you can succeed as long as you are willing to keep moving forward.”

To learn more about how GCU starts students on their way to finding their purpose, visit our website or use the Request More Information button on this page.