An Open Letter to the Standardized Patient

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.

Dear SP,

Thank you. Thank you for your commitment to my future and for teaching me more than any textbook every will. Thank you for your gentle guiding and wonderful feedback. Thank you for your willingness to be a part of my medical education.

You’ve watched me grow. You’ve watched my progress. You’ve been an essential part of my career. Your passion is invigorating. Your stories are unforgettable. Your encouragement is my joy.

You’ve also watched me fail. You’ve seen my panic, my confusion, my constant checking of the clipboard. You’ve sent me little hints, or the all-humbling “the last guy didn’t do it anything like that.”

Thank you for tolerating my EHR crashing, being whacked with my stethoscope, and for sitting through the same exam 12 times in a row. Thank you for helping when I can’t figure out how to operate the table or how to turn on an instrument. My growth has truly been molded by your hands.

You are an integral part of my education. You have not only influenced me, but will also influence my patients in the future. Because of you, I know that I will be a better doctor.

Thank you for sharing your experiences with me. Thank you for teaching me not only about the patient encounter that day, but also for sharing with me some about you. Hearing what brought you to this program has taught me even more.

You are very much appreciated. Your dedication will forever be cherished by each and every one of us.

Thank you for all that you do.



Anna Tarasidis

Anna Tarasidis is a native of Greenwood, SC, and graduated in Bioengineering from Clemson University in 2016. You can most likely find her out on a hike, deep in some Netflix, loving on somebody’s dog, or, let’s be honest, in the library. She has a passion for people, whether by mentoring or teaching or just through a simple conversation.


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