Student Spotlight

Emilie Mathura, OMS I

Class of 2023

  • Hometown: Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Undergraduate Studies: Bachelor of Science degree in Human Biology
  • Clubs and Activities: Student Government Association, OB/GYN Club, American Medical Women's Association, and Medical Students for Choice.

Why did you choose RVUCOM? The Urban Underserved Track and the sabbatical program which will allow me to complete my Master of Public Health...
Read More

Faculty Spotlight

Cathy Ruff, MS, PA-C

Program Director and Chair of Physician Assistant Studies
Associate Professor of Physician Assistant Studies

  • Hometown: Dearborn, Michigan
  • Undergraduate Studies: Bachelor of Science degree in Cellular Biology
  • Graduate Studies: Master of Science degree in Cellular/Molecular Biology. Physician Assistant Training at the University of Colorado Health Science Center.

What class/classes do you teach? I teach professionalism topics, Physical Exam, and small group skills. Why did you choose...
Read More

MSBS Alumni Testimonials

Sean Charczenko, MSBS Class of 2019

“One thing I really like about the MSBS program at RVU is that it builds a collaborative environment among the students. Healthcare is a team effort and I wanted to be a part of a program that helped students work together to succeed rather than compete against each other.”

Christian Clodfelder, MSBS Class of 2019

“The MSBS program taught me how to study and how to be an organized, disciplined student. I feel immensely more prepared for medical school after completing the MSBS program.”

Corinne Ricci, MSBS Class of 2019

“I am so thankful I have had the opportunity to be part of the MSBS program. Throughout this program I have grown as an individual and an academic. I have learned to remain resilient in overcoming obstacles, modify my study techniques and have gained more efficient test‐taking skills. All of this has better prepared me for the challenges that lie ahead in medical school. It has been great to be a part of a program with faculty that truly care about the success of their students and are always available for advisement.”

Desira Vance, MSBS Class of 2019

The MSBS program has been one of the best choices I have made in life! The faculty and program help to build the poise, demeanor, and critical thinking skills needed to excel to the next level. In addition to the great foundation that is gained, you also gain a family from your peers since it is a small class size, which is a great support system.”

Jack Stickland, MSBS Class of 2019

“The MSBS program has been one of the most life changing experiences I have ever endured. Through all the challenges I have faced in this program I have come out on the other side with a new and refreshing outlook on healthcare and medicine. This program has pushed me to become successful in ways I did not know I was capable of, both in the classroom and in the community. I cannot imagine where I would be without the MSBS program.”

Lacie Phibbs, MSBS Class of 2019

“I am so thankful that I found the MSBS program at RVU. When I began considering applying to medical school I was concerned I didn’t fully have the foundational knowledge that I needed, despite a good GPA. In a MSBS program I think it is important to have classes that teach both basic biomedical principles and more importantly, clinically relevant cases. The MSBS at RVU incorporated both, and I know that having this exposure and wealth of information will contribute to my success next year in the COM. Looking back I am so thankful I took this step. The critical thinking and test taking skills I have learned in conjunction with a challenging course load, will help me in medical school and beyond. My advice for students looking to pursue an MSBS is to find one with these qualities and one that gives you the opportunity to prove to yourself what a great medical professional you will become.”

Spencer Cooper, MSBS Class of 2019

“After my undergraduate studies, I was worried about the transition to the rigors of medical school. The MSBS program at Rocky Vista has not only quelled my fears, but truly transformed my study habits and time management into effective skills. The faculty and curriculum have instilled a solid foundation of knowledge and problem-solving that I continue to use every day.”

Talon Harris, MSBS Class of 2019

“The RVU MSBS program has strengthened my foundational knowledge of biomedical sciences which will help me advance to the next stage of my education.”

Elke Wood, MSBS Class of 2019

“Choosing the RVU MSBS Program has been one of the best decisions of my life. As a non-traditional student, my undergraduate degree was in Economics, and my science background was weak. Although I excelled in my science courses, I still had self-doubt. This program showed me that I could succeed in academics at a high level, and further confirmed my desire to become a physician. I am confident that I will succeed in medical school thanks to the RVU MSBS program.”

Devin Monroe, MSBS Class of 2019

“My favorite part about the program is that I already feel like I am in medical school. I am challenged, I learn from the same professors as the medical school, I learn about actual medical topics, and I even get to interact with simulated patients.”

Julio Hernandez, MSBS Class of 2019

“The program should be called “Medical School Boot Camp” because that’s exactly what it is. It will prepare you for any medical school program in the country, and for that reason I highly suggest doing the program at RVU. It will not be handed to you though, and you’ll have to earn your wings. Even if you have a 3.0 undergraduate GPA like myself, the program will transform you into a student capable of taking any challenge at any academic level.”

Erin Onat, MSBS Class of 2019

“I have had a tremendously positive experience at RVU in the MSBS program. What struck me most from my first day on campus and continues to impress me as I near the completion of the program is the devotion and attentiveness that the faculty commits to its students.

From the resource officers to the facilities team to the strikingly knowledgeable professors, I have felt exceedingly supported in this program. Despite frequenting professors’ offices when I needed help outside of office hours, I have not even once been turned away and asked to return at a more convenient time.

This isn’t too say the program is easy. With 24- hour access to the campus, library, study rooms, and near complete access to the anatomy lab, I’ve been given all of the tools necessary to succeed, but students can only expect success after devoting the time and commitment demanded of them in this rigorous curriculum. Now on a path to fulfill my childhood dream of being a doctor, I’d unreservedly recommend the RVU MSBS program to any students in need of enhancing their academic records.”

Elizabeth Coats, MSBS Class of 2019

“The MSBS program at RVU fully prepared me for entering into a future PA program. The professors and staff supported me during every step of my application journey, and even organized mock interviews to prepare me for the interview process. I firmly believe being at RVU helped me get accepted to the program of my choice. The rigorous classes and exams are essentially the same content and difficulty that you experience while in medical, dental or PA school, so going through this makes you not only a more competitive applicant, but gives you an edge over the rest of the pack by the sheer volume of information you will already know when starting your program. Thank you RVU!”

Megan Hodes, MSBS Class of 2019

“I love the community at RVU. The teachers are always available and kind. We have all developed great relationships.”

Onilia Zorio, MSBS Class of 2018

“The MSBS program prepared me for the COM in ways that I could not have even anticipated. The program gave me a strong foundation of knowledge, but more than anything, it taught me how to problem solve and think about information in a clinical and applied manor. My time in the program allowed me to not only be surviving medical school, but to be thriving!”

Mukanya Tchombela, MSBS Class of 2018

“When I look back at my undergraduate experience, I feel like the MSBS program here at RVU has done a great job in preparing me to be successful in medical school. This program has filled a knowledge gap that I had after finishing my undergrad. In addition to gaining knowledge, I have learned to be a responsible and disciplined student. I now prioritize things and focus on the most important ones. My experience in MSBS program not only has shaped my life and made me an active member of the society due to several team projects and services in the community, but has also given me a step ahead here in medical school. As a physician in training and a future doctor, I will continue to be grateful for the decision I made to attend the RVU MSBS program before entering medical school.”

Kyle Pierce, MSBS Class of 2018

“The MSBS program gave me so much more than I could have ever asked for. It afforded me time to sort out study habits, testing and time management skills. The program provided a time and place for me to make mistakes, learn from those mistakes and become a better person through them.  I knew that someday I would make it into a COM however this program took me from being able to survive in medical school to being able to thrive.”