Zane Sternberg may not be the best choice of a student to advertise the UPP program. After all, most UPP students find out about this program through advisors at their high school or from friends or family. They then apply and if lucky are accepted. But Zane lived his first 18 years outside a small, southern Colorado town with just 500 year round residents. Instead of hearing of the UPP program, his school counselor found out about a brand new program that has arisen out of the joining of the University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus. This is an eight-year program beginning as an undergraduate freshman and culminating in an M.D. degree (the B.A./B.S.-M.D. Program). As part of this program, he was placed into the UPP program, both the summer study in labs and clinics at Anschutz and the roughly monthly Saturday Academy meetings held during the academic year. Thus he never applied for the UPP program, as such.
Still, Zane feels he has benefited greatly from this program. He was the valedictorian of his high school graduating class and graduated with a GPA above a 4.0. He now, for the first time, finds himself surrounded by students that are engaging and challenging him. Students who are excited by academic work and by the prospect of entering a profession with research and clinical activities. Students eager to know everything they can about medicine and the philosophy of medicine, exploring what makes a good doctor in discussion groups. Debating the moral aspects of medical care. During his summer working at Anschutz, he worked with a world-leading pediatric infectious-disease specialist. The lab was developing a cytokine-based, alternative way of diagnosing viral infections. How often do 19-year-old students get to experience such things? Zane may have come to the UPP program by a different road, but he is as impressed with this unique, eye-opening program as anyone there.