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Liam Murath Found the Academic Rigor He Needed at Aims

Not everyone is ready for college right after high school. It takes some students a little while to grow into a college mindset, and they may decide to postpone college until they are ready. Liam Murath took time to gain valuable life experience through military service. Once he started attending Aims Community College, he developed a clear sense of his academic and career goals.

Liam Murath

Liam was not particularly fond of the traditional education system growing up. After serving for several years in the U.S. Army, Liam returned to Colorado with a new mission, higher education. “I have a GED, so I couldn't attend any four-year colleges I wanted to.” He started researching schools in Colorado and Aims came up as one of the best community colleges in the state.

Aims got Liam “back in the swing of school” and started him on a path toward success. He didn’t know that higher education would be an environment where he would thrive. Despite his past reservations about school, Liam surprised himself with his academic success and felt a sense of pride in his achievements. Liam found that returning to school once he was committed and ready worked in his favor.

“Age has definitely been an advantage. Do you know how they always say your brain's not fully developed until you're 25? I think I had a huge mind shift between early adulthood, my young 20s and where I'm at now. I take things much more seriously and know how to apply myself.”

Superior Professors and Classes

Academics was one of the highlights of Liam’s journey. “When I first came to Aims, I just wanted to start fresh with school, kind of dip my toes in the water and see how well I did now as an adult compared to my previous experiences with the school.” 

After not taking classes for nearly a decade, he surprised himself with how well he did at Aims. Liam got straight A’s his first semester and continued to get excellent grades. It is something he takes pride in. “My background in high school, I was that kid that thought he was too smart, so just never cared. It feels really good to go from not doing well to doing really well.”

Liam has always been interested in science and “jumped around STEM goals.” Aims provided classes where he could explore these topics. “When I first started, I was interested in doing something with physics and astronomy, but I switched to an interest in medicine.”

His courses challenged by chemistry, trigonometry, and classes outside of his STEM classes. Areas such as sociology and interpersonal communication pushed him in new ways, “I'm the math and science type, so it's hard to switch my brain over to those types of things.” The classes and the instructors were fundamental to his growth and success. 

Liam can’t say enough about the Aims faculty members he met along the way. “The professors at Aims are just unmatched. I have never had a bad professor. Every semester I'm like, “I have a new favorite professor because they're all good.” Liam mentioned a few that inspired him. “Douglas Grattan is an amazing philosophy teacher. Morgan Bland is my micro bio teacher, and she is fantastic. Karen Scarpella in sociology is also another good one.”

“I’d just like to hammer down how good the professors are at Aims. That is crucial to just how good Aims is. How every single one I've had, and I've taken tons of classes, has just been amazing.”

Seamless Transfer to UNC

After graduating from Aims with an associate degree in Biology in December 2022, Liam is now attending the University of Northern Colorado. He felt like his time at Aims prepared him to continue his education at the university.

“All the advisors I've talked to with all their checklists and how they check up on me to ensure everything's going well.” Liam appreciated the openness and accessibility to those assisting him with graduation and transfer. “I can always reach out to someone, and there's no fear of asking a dumb question. I can just talk to them about the smallest things and they'll have an answer and be super helpful no matter what.”

Liam was part of the Aims2UNC transition program. Aims2UNC is a joint initiative between Aims Community College and the University of Northern Colorado. This program streamlines the path for students to transition directly to UNC to pursue a bachelor's degree after earning an associate degree from Aims. He also received assistance from Aims Veterans Services to transfer his GI Bill education benefits to UNC. 

Liam is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biology at the University of Northern Colorado, emphasizing pre-health and biomedical sciences. Liam’s minor is in chemistry. He wants to keep his grades high and begin preparing for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). This course of study and eventual degree will lead him to his ultimate goal: becoming a doctor. 

Med School Aspirations

Liam was injured in the Army. That experience led him to think more about the practice of medicine. “I had a lot of experience with doctors, and I am thankful for what they did for me, for my injury. And then I love biology and chemistry and all those things.” He said. One of the paths he is considering is oncology or cancer-related medicine. 

“I would want to do more than just med school. I want to do a dual M.D. and Ph.D. school and do my leukemia research. And then, after that, hopefully, work my way into oncology. But that's the top one, the shooting for the stars one.”

Liam wants to take on this field since he has a close family member currently fighting this disease and sees that he can make an impact. 

“Everyone thinks of cancer as an evil, malicious being, but it's just a simple change in your body cells that has drastic consequences.” He continued, “And to me, that's really fascinating, and I also want to prevent it.”

Liam is working on fulfilling his big dreams. It is an educational quest that began right here at Aims Community College.