From McDonald’s to Med School

Man in blue shirt
BBCC Alumnus Timothy Woodiwiss

BBCC Alumnus Timothy Woodiwiss has been selected as one of the top five nominees for the 2015 Transforming Lives Awards sponsored by the Washington Association of Community College Trustees. Thirty-four community colleges in the state submitted nominations.

As one of the top five award winners, Woodiwiss is invited to tell his story and answer questions during a dinner event attended by legislators, community college trustees and administrators in Olympia on January 29, 2016.

He will receive a $500 scholarship from the state trustees’ association and a $100 scholarship from the BBCC Trustees. Woodiwiss was selected from 11 nominations of BBCC students. All of them will be honored at a dinner and recognition ceremony sponsored by the BBCC Trustees on December 9.

Timothy’s story:               

When Timothy Woodiwiss dropped out of high school after ninth grade, he thought he might become the manager of the McDonald’s restaurant in Ritzville. He started working full time in 2002 at age 16 and was promoted to McDonald’s shift manager when he was 17.

He earned a GED at Big Bend Community College “only because at 16 years old, it was against the law for me to work full time during school hours unless I had my GED.”

After four years working at McDonald’s, Woodiwiss found the courage to attend BBCC. He sat in his car trembling with fear on the first day of classes in spring of 2006.

“I was sure a teacher would ask me a question, and everyone would know I was an idiot,” he said. “It could have gone south at that moment if I had given in to my fears.”

Woodiwiss went to class that day, and things worked out well. He is currently attending the University of Washington School of Medicine. He graduated from WSU last spring with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biochemistry and minors in microbiology and animal science. He wants specialize in oncology.

“Who would have thought that I, a high school dropout nobody, could have accomplished this?” he said when he learned of his acceptance to medical school.

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Read the Seattle Times article here.

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