Pre-med student with 3.89 GPA says he’s still hanging in there

Melvin Schwartzengoggle | Ehrlenmeyer Flask Extraordinaire

Ziggy Jenkins, a sophomore biology major who aspires to attend Washington University medical school and be a practicing dermatologist, is very optimistic about his future, despite a less-than-ideal grade point average.

“I know that some of my grades weren’t as good as I was hoping they could be, like in Cell Biology, Organic Chemistry, Biology I and maybe both semesters of General Chemistry as well,” said Jenkins. “However, my family and I both know that I was always destined to get into med school, so I’m just going to keep working at it.”

Jenkins’ father, Dr. Alexander Graham Jenkins, is a Wash. U. School of Medicine graduate and prominent dermatologist at Barnes Jewish Hospital. Ziggy has been shadowing his father for the past three summers in an effort to gain experience that would be beneficial to his career.

“I just know that working with my dad is one of those things that will elevate my applications to med school,” he said.

Jenkins doesn’t think that his lack of stellar grades will be a deterrent in getting accepted into medical school.

“My grades are the way they are only because of my extremely busy extra-curricular schedule, which includes Pre-Med Society, Campus Y, Globemed and EST,” he said. “Also, my GPA has received a solid boost from really easy classes like Writing I, Calculus II and everything in the Anthropology Department. Those humanities kids just don’t know what it’s like to be a pre-med.”

Jenkins points out that there’s more to class than just getting good grades.

“A lot of people are concerned with just getting all A’s,” he said. “But that’s not the only thing that class is all about. That’s why I sit in the front row every day and go to office hours whenever I’m not in class, so I can get to know the professors better than your average student. Those relationships will really make a difference when I’m applying to medical school.”

After he has a well-established dermatology practice, Jenkins plans to open dermatology clinics in sub-Saharan Africa.

“I feel that I need to give back to the world after it offers so much to me,” he said. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to work on my Physiology midterm. An A – just isn’t going to cut it at this point.”

Sign up for the email edition

Stay up to date with everything happening as Washington University returns to campus.