TWU science students make the grade

TWU’s Faculty of Natural and Applied Sciences continues to turn out quality students—among them, recent graduate Josh Frohlich (’14) who is preparing to enter medical school at the University of British Columbia (UBC) this fall. Frohlich, a Langley resident, credits his TWU experience for helping him get in.

“There were a lot of things I got to do at TWU that ultimately helped me get into med school,” said Frohlich, who as an undergraduate student won a National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Undergraduate Student Research Award to do research for TWU Professor of Chemistry and Assistant Dean of the Faculty of Natural and Applied Sciences Craig Montgomery, Ph.D. “That experience was a really good opportunity to develop my lab skills, to develop my knowledge, and to jump ahead of some of my peers.”

At a sciences conference that same summer, Frohlich met his future spouse, then-second year biotechology student Rebecca Noort (’13)—the pair married earlier this year—and another friend who served as a groomsman at their wedding.

“It was a little intimidating, being fresh out of my first year and getting used to being in university, but it was a great experience. I developed a lot of skills and a lot of friends.”

Since high school, Frohlich has known that he wanted to pursue a medical career. “I set my sights on med school, and did everything I could to make that dream come true,” he said.

One of the main reasons he excelled at TWU was due to the personal relationships he developed with his professors. “I could talk with them about course material, or challenges I was having,” Frohlich said. “Just by continuously pursuing excellence, my dream became a reality.”

Although he aspires to be a specialist, Frohlich is not yet sure what that specialty might be. “People ask me what kind of doctor I want to be, and my answer is, “a good one,” he joked. “At this point, I don’t really know. But med school gives you the opportunity to test the waters to find our what your niche is.”

In addition to his academic pursuits, Frohlich also served as a teaching assistant, a local lifeguard, and volunteered at his church. “To get into med school, you have to have your hands in a lot of things,” said Frohlich. “Schools are looking for holistic, well-rounded students for their programs.”

Other TWU graduates headed for medical school this fall include: Mary Jeffers (’12), Chris Dobosz (’13), Sarah Pankratz (’12), and Lydia Guthrie (’12) to UBC; and Micah Peters (’13) to the University of Alberta.

As well, William Sikkema (’14) has been accepted into the prestigious Ph.D. program in nanotechnology at Rice University, Justin Baerg (’11) to the Masters in Physiotherapy at UBC, Peter Grypma ('14) to the Master of Science in Finance program at SFU, and James Conway (’14) to the Boucher Institute of Naturopathic Medicine.

Two TWU alumni, Kari Nishi (’10) and Scott Rapske (’07) just received their MD degrees from UBC and the University of Calgary, respectively. And earlier this month Jessica Vanderploeg (’09) defended her Ph.D. in biology/developmental genetics at McMaster University.


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