Jonathan Beard
Fayetteville, Ga.
Undergraduate Degree:
Classical Trombone Performance, The Juilliard School

I’ll always remember the very first time I went to a WVU football game, and the crowd launched into the “Let’s go ... Mountaineers" cheer. It was at that moment that I knew I had come to the right place.

My degree will allow me to serve the people of this state and country as an internal medicine physician.

I would tell my freshman self that the road ahead is going to be one of the most intense challenges you’ll ever take on, and there will be stumbles along the way, but keep your head down and work hard, and once you make it to the end, it will be one of the most satisfying feelings of accomplishment you can possibly imagine. 

Describe your journey leading up to graduation—what made you want to go to medical school? 

I actually graduated from Juilliard with a music degree, and I knew toward the end that I didn’t want to be a professional musician. So, I spent a few years after undergrad going back to Georgia State University and getting the coursework I needed to become what was actually my first love as a child—a doctor.

Why did you choose to attend WVU?

When I started looking at schools, I wanted to go to a big D1 university that had great spirit, sports and everything I didn’t get during undergrad. So, when I visited Morgantown and saw the campus, the whole university and everything it had to offer, I knew this was going to be a really fun place, where I could both enjoy my four years and also get a fantastic education. 

Describe your time at WVU. What’s your favorite memory?

This sounds crazy, but in our second year—which is arguably the hardest of the four years—I had two twin brothers that I studied with all day, every day. We would work for a few hours with the books, then we’d take a 30-minute video game break … then we’d study again for a few more hours, run to the grocery store and get cookies and Cheetos, and then we’d work again. We’d do this for hour and hours and hours. It was the most brutal mental grind you can possibly imagine, but looking back, it was so cool to learn so much in so little time.

What advice would you give to someone thinking about attending medical school? Why should they go to WVU?

Everything you’ve heard about how hard medical school is, is true—you’ve never worked this hard before, and you’re never going to work this hard again. But if you love learning, and you love people, then you’re going to thank yourself for putting in the work. Why WVU?? Because it’s a family. There are places out there where it’s every person for themselves, and you have to fight to stay alive—this isn’t the case at WVU. Before I even stepped foot on campus, there were already upperclassmen who were sending us Facebook links, PowerPoints and outlines to help us out with the first test, and that continued for all four years.

What’s next for you?

Next for me is my residency in internal medicine. I’ve been incredibly blessed to be accepted into the No. 2 hospital in the country at Cleveland Clinic. So, next time you hear that commercial on your Pandora radio saying, “if you have heart problems, call Cleveland clinic,” you’re coming to see me!