An open thank you from a medical student to nursing staff (everywhere):
When I started as a nursing assistant, I had three goals: gaining clinical experience, seeing what doctors do on a day-to-day basis, and paying rent. While I did gain invaluable clinical experience, the revelation I had would shape me as a physician forever: nurses run the world. More specifically, nurses run the hospital floor. I very rarely had interactions with the physicians, but the knowledge that I gleaned from my nursing staff has benefited me as a medical student and I am confident that it will help me in the future as a physician.
Medicine is my dream. It puts you to the test, figuratively and literally. Being able to be in its presence is something that is earned and fought for. It’s like Mt. Everest- a long treacherous hike, full of obstacles, to get to the reward at the top. Medicine is not easy.
Here, at the end of didactic education, how do you say goodbye to the room you have spent every day of the last two years in?
The room where you learned to do a cardiac exam, where you had your inevitable final exam meltdowns, where you celebrated good test grades, and where you studied late nights and early mornings. The room that introduced you to the people who are now family.
On April 8, 2017, Greenville Health System hosted the 11th Annual Minority Health Summit (now known as the Community Health Summit). The Summit is a yearly health education initiative held during National Minority Health Awareness Month. The Summit’s purpose is “to educate and increase awareness of major health disparities that disproportionately affect the lives of minorities in our community.” This special day featured keynote speaker Tajh Boyd, healthy lifestyle presentations, health-risk assessments, physician-led talks on diabetes and mental health, and powerful survivor stories and testimonials. I had the privilege of attending the event and got to meet and share stories with people aged 12-100 (seriously, I took a 100-year-old woman’s blood pressure, and it was better than mine!).
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To Dean Douglas: medic, instructor, volunteer, father, husband and friend. With so many commemorating your extraordinary life in service, one can’t help but think of the countless times you honored those who went before you with the bagpipes you played so well.
Two years ago, when my medical school class gathered to honor those who had donated their bodies for our learning, you agreed to play for our procession. You said you were honored to watch us pay tribute with our music, our words, and our art. So today I use my words to pay tribute to you.
Before fourth-year student Jeremiah White ever started medical school, he wrote this post about the moment he knew he wanted to be a doctor. Fast forward four years later and Jeremiah is about to become a physician, and he recently found out his residency placement in emergency medicine. Read below about his emotions on Match Day and his thoughts about his future as a doctor:
A couple years ago, I wrote about the privilege of becoming a physician. When I wrote that, I was still far removed from the clinical environment. I did not have a true appreciation for the complexities of everyday life in the hospital. I wrote that as aspiring physicians it is imperative for us to not be owned by our privilege but to instead esteem our work as the highest privilege. These facts have remained unchanged in my mind, but I have now come to face the challenges of maintaining such an attitude and posture.
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Like many aspiring physicians across the country, I came into medical school with high expectations for the quality of care I wanted to give my future patients. I envisioned bringing a patient back from the edge of death in the trauma bay or performing life-saving surgery on a young child with cancer. I would do it all with a smile on my face and an open heart – yearning to love people relentlessly and sacrifice a bit of myself for patients in desperate need of care. Now, in my last year of medical school, this vision of myself in medicine still persists, yet has been tested regularly.
As part of their educational training, students at the USC School of Medicine Greenville experience encounters with standardized patients, or trained individuals who portray the roles of patients or family members. Students are able to develop and practice communication and physical exam skills, as well as foster a greater understanding of the importance of the “big picture” of a patient’s medical history. Below is a thank you note from M2 Anna Tarasidis for the many wonderful standardized patients that have been an integral part of our students’ education. The Standardized Patient Program is a service of the Greenville HealthCare Simulation Center.