Las Vegas, N.M. – Two Highlands University graduates will follow their dreams at A.T. Still University of Health Sciences medical programs in Mesa, Arizona.
Molly Enenbach, B.S. biology 2016, was accepted to the School of Osteopathic Medicine at A.T. Still, and Jivomir Siarov, B.A. pre-professional allied health 2016, was accepted to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program.
“Osteopaths look at the patient with a holistic manner, emphasizing preventive care and musculoskeletal manipulation while also utilizing traditional medicine,” Enenbach said. “This approach is very appealing to me because it will give me the ability to provide the most well-rounded care for my patients.”
A.T. Still is a leading health sciences university and pioneered the first osteopathic medicine program in the U.S. in 1892. Both Enenbach and Siarov were accepted to multiple medical school programs. They begin their A.T. Still studies in July.
“I’m very thankful and honored to be chosen for A.T. Still medical school. It will be a challenge with enormous responsibility,” said Enenbach, a 22-year-old from Aztec, New Mexico who traces her interest in medicine to when she was a child needing asthma treatment.
Enenbach earned a 3.96 GPA at Highlands and was named Student of the Year in 2016. The university’s Achieving in Research Math and Science (ARMAS) scholar also led the Cowgirl soccer team as captain for three years, winning RMAC First Team All Conference Academic Honors twice.
She said she gained valuable research experience in biology professor Sarah Corey-Rivas’ Molecular Research Laboratory at Highlands.
“There are so many phenomenal biology professors at Highlands and I was lucky to have Dr. Sarah Corey-Rivas and Dr. Carol Linder as my co-advisers. Working in Dr. Sarah’s lab opened my eyes to the importance of research in all science fields, especially medicine. She’s incredibly dedicated to her research and students, which inspired me to follow my passions and dreams, including medical school,” Enenbach said.
Corey-Rivas said she values Enenbach as a cherished colleague whom she regards as the future doctor she will become.
Enenbach said the tight-knit community at Highlands created an exceptional support system that helped her excel and remain steadfast to her goals.
She also completed a summer research internship at the University of Colorado – Boulder’s Nanofabrication Laboratory that focused on fabricating test samples using 3D super resolution microscopy.
Also a leader off the soccer field, Enenbach founded the International Service Group at Highlands and was its first president. She was the lead organizer for the group’s medical delegation to La Antigua, Guatemala in May 2016.
“Volunteering in Guatemala was a valuable learning experience about the high need for health care globally in developing countries,” Enenbach said.
Siarov is interested in pursuing geriatric neurological rehabilitation as a physical therapy specialty, something he’s been intrigued with since middle school.
“I had the privilege of visiting my mom at work, where she was a caregiver at a facility for people with Alzheimer’s,” said the 25-year-old Bulgarian-born Siarov. “I realized how important it was for these patients to keep moving to maintain their overall health. I’ve always been an active, athletic person and been drawn to how our bodies move and function. Physical therapy is the perfect fit for my personal and professional interests.”
Siarov, who earned dean’s list honors at Highlands, said his laboratory experiences in human anatomy and physiology as well as kinesiology at the university provided excellent preparation for physical therapy school.
“The professors at Highlands have an open door and are extremely helpful. Collectively, they inspired me with their knowledge, generosity and empathy. They made it possible for me to follow my dreams into the physical therapy arena,” said Siarov, whose family moved to San Diego when he was seven.
He is working as a physical therapy technician in San Diego in a geriatric outpatient physical therapy clinic where he is gaining experience working primarily with Parkinson’s patients.
Both Enenbach and Siarov have fond memories of time spent studying with fellow students at ARMAS.
“I enjoyed the collaborative group study atmosphere at ARMAS, with students bouncing ideas off each other,” Siarov said. “This strengthened my understanding of science subject matter.”
Linder, who is serving as Highlands’ interim provost and vice president for academic affairs, said Enenbach and Siarov have strong work ethics.
“Molly was very proactive in pursuing educational opportunities and high-impact experiences like lab research, internships and service learning,” Linder said. “She will be highly successful because her personal values are aligned so closely with her professional goals.
“Jivo came to Highlands with a personal vision and was incredibly persistent in achieving the academic excellence needed to pursue a career in physical therapy. His upbeat and optimistic attitude will serve him well,” Linder said.
Linder and Elizabeth Ratzlaff, ARMAS director, co-advise the International Service Group and accompanied the students to Guatemala in 2016.