College of Natural Sciences Student Spotlight: Wyatt Gardner ('17)

Posted: January 31, 2024 | Author: College of Natural Sciences | Read Time: 2 minutes

The Walter Maxwell Gibson College of Natural Sciences has long had a nationwide reputation for stellar preparation of health care students. Hundreds of our alumni, including many of you, are practicing physicians, dentists, physical therapists, and a multitude of other health care professionals. Our college’s reputation for preparing future healthcare providers is what ultimately convinced Wyatt to come to SUU for his undergraduate education.

Wyatt Gardner was born and raised along the central California coast in Pismo Beach, but his family ultimately moved to Mapleton, Utah. A 2017 graduate of American Leadership Academy, Wyatt was first introduced to SUU through the Governor’s Honors Academy, which he attended in 2016. Already knowing he wanted to pursue a career in medicine, he knew he had found his academic home as soon as he learned about SUU’s amazing pre-med preparation program.Wyatt Gardner Headshot

When asked about his time at Southern Utah University and specifically about the College of Natural Sciences, Wyatt is quick to talk about caring and supportive faculty, small class sizes, scholarship support, the Utah Health Scholars Program, and access to the outdoors. Wyatt has been highly engaged as a student, has excelled academically, and will leave an indelible mark on the college and the institution.

Additionally, Wyatt may very well be a record-setter in the college, having been accepted to 16 medical schools (and counting!). In fact, he has been so successful in his pursuit that he is now turning down medical school interviews because he believes he has already found his dream school - the osteopathic medicine program at Midwestern University in Glendale, Arizona. Wyatt applied to, and was accepted by, both types of medical school programs - MD and DO. Ultimately however, Wyatt felt that the osteopathic medicine philosophy was more appealing to him and resonated with his own philosophy for holistic healthcare. He took a very experiential and deliberate pathway to his decision-making, shadowing physicians of both types, reading about the pros and cons of each type of training program, and studying the underlying philosophy of both approaches to health care.

Wyatt and his wife, a nurse and fellow SUU alumnus, will move to southern Arizona and begin their medical school journey following graduation this spring. Wyatt will be supported by a scholarship from the United States Army, which will allow him to enter with officer status following Officer Candidate School. Wyatt says that he is still open to multiple avenues regarding medical specialization. He wants to wait and see what piques his interest most as he engages in medical training and eventual rotations.

Congratulations, Wyatt! We can’t wait to see where you end up. You make the College of Natural Sciences proud!

Tags: College of Natural Sciences