DES MOINES, Iowa – Revay Stewart has always dreamed of attending medical school. He worked several jobs through undergrad, and he graduated from Grand View University in 2019, but when it came time for him to apply for medical school, he learned a harsh lesson he realized that he owed money.
“So after I graduated, I learned that I owed well over $10,000 in tuition,” said Revay Stewart, an aspiring medical student. Although he worked several jobs during his undergrad years at Grand View University, he did not have enough money to pay back the money he owed.
“[I was ] working 50 plus hours a week and the necessities that I have to pay, you know, everything that comes with living on your own. Plus, getting that tuition paid down in order to get my transcripts, that just felt very overwhelming.”
However, late last year, Revay met Des Moines University Medical student Ruffin Tchakounte at the Iowa Methodist Medical Center. When Tchakounte inquired about Revay’s plans to take a medical college admission test, an eight-hour-long examine he was surprised by Revay’s answer.
“He’s working 50 -60, you know it’s just very hard, so I could definitely empathize with him, and I wanted to help in any way that I could,” said Tchakounte.
So Tchakounte reached out to Des Moines University Chief Diversity Officer Dr. Rich Salas to brainstorm ideas to raise money. In May, the two decided to start a GoFundMe Page. Within a few days, the page exceeded its goal.
“I went paid them [Grand View University] off, got my transcripts, and it felt like a weight was lifted off my shoulders,” said Stewart.
Later this year, Stewart plans to take the MCAT’s, and he hopes to pay it forward one day.