Valerie Martucci, a student from the University of Virginia’s College at Wise, recently found a paper she wrote as an elementary student. The topic of the paper was her desire to become a dermatologist and to write in medical journals.

The UVA Wise junior is closer to her dream career. She has been accepted to the Rocovich Scholar program at the Edward Via College of Medicine. Martucci, a biochemistry major,is the second UVA Wise student to receive the honor.

“I am very excited because I feel the Rocovich Scholar program is what I have been looking for,” she said. “I have wanted to be a doctor for a very long time.”

Martucci, part of a military family, was born in California but has lived in Kansas, Pennsylvania, New York, Alaska and now Virginia. She spent time juggling classes, sports and hobbies while in high school. She now calls Wise home.

After moving to Wise, I came to realize how important a supportive environment is, and the professors and my peers have helped me to become more confident, mature and goal driven,” she said.

While on campus, Martucci prepared herself to work toward the goal of entering medical school. She looked for all types of opportunities that would fit her, and she said the Rocovich Scholar program is the perfect fit.

“VCOM focuses on holistic based medicine and outreach, and it has a supportive environment,” she said. “Now that I have reached this point, I am filled with joy, gratification and inspiration.”

Rocovich Scholars are granted early acceptance to the Edward Via College of Medicine in their third year of undergraduate studies. She was nominated for this honor by the UVA Wise Natural Science faculty.

Photo of John Rocovich and Valerie Martucci