September 18, 2017

Doctor, Doctor

Michael Iglesia '08 recently completed not one but two doctoral programs — a PhD in Genetics and Molecular Biology as well as an MD — at UNC Chapel Hill. 

“My undergraduate education helped me to view the world around me with a critical lens. Guilford taught me to engage with the ideas and worldviews I encounter in an open and informed way. That’s contributed to the way I view the importance of my research, and it’s what makes a Guilford education so advantageous.”
His expertise and love for math and science were fostered at Guilford, where he was a double major in Chemistry and Mathematics. Guilford’s approach to learning was just as important. 
“My education gave me the chance to explore fields of study that fascinated me,” he says. “It gave me confidence to pursue ideas that excite me and the openness of mind to accept truth where I encounter it. That practice of honest pursuit of truth is an important part of who I am today.”

Pursue the ideas that fascinate, excite and confuse you. Be ready to try something new, and be open to whatever you find.

Michael Iglesia '08
Internal Medicine Resident at Washington University in St. Louis

Engaged from the Outset

As Michael experienced, Guilford is committed to connecting world-class faculty with students through small class sizes and opportunities for student-led research from early points in a student’s academic career. 
“My work in the Chemistry department taught me how to perform independent research — how to identify an interesting problem, assess the current state of knowledge, and find a way to address an unanswered question,” he says. “Furthermore, my training in Mathematics and computational physical chemistry prepared me well for my current research in bioinformatics and genomics. The individual attention I received from my professors helped me combine these two areas of study in a way that prepared me well for my current research.”
Michael is now working on his residency in Internal Medicine at Washington University in St. Louis. He plans to work as a medical oncologist and start a research lab in cancer genomics, with the ultimate goal of taking the scientific community’s understanding of tumor biology and making it clinically relevant, improving the care of patients with cancer.
To all Guilford students, future doctors or otherwise, he says, “Pursue the ideas that fascinate, excite and confuse you. Be ready to try something new, and be open to whatever you find. It's hard to predict where new opportunities will take you.”

Dreaming of becoming a doctor or researcher someday? Explore Guilford’s Pre-Medical program as well as our 90-plus majors and minors. And then schedule a personal visit to speak with faculty to learn more about how Guilford will help you realize your potential.