About Our Contributors


Kyle Duke

I was born and mostly raised in Mount Pleasant, SC before attending Furman University (roll dins), getting a BS in neuroscience. I took a two-year hiatus from academia before returning to the Upstate to attend USCSOMG. I enjoy life, people, and Chick-Fil-A. I try not to take life too seriously, and find the silver lining no matter how thin it is. Caffeine is nice, I wish there were more Piggly Wiggly’s left, and I’m not great at writing bios.

Austin Foster
I was born in Indianapolis, IN, grew up in Jackson, MS, finished high school in Louisville, KY, and have called Charleston, SC, home since my family moved there in 2014. I found my way to Greenville five years ago to pursue an undergraduate education at Furman University. I graduated in May 2017 with a degree in Business Administration, and I cannot express how excited I am to now call Greenville home. I am passionate about USC School of Medicine Greenville’s commitment to patient-centered care and developing physicians who, in the words of Dr. Spence Taylor, former President of Greenville Health System, are not only learning how to become experts in content, but also in context. I am excited to share this journey with you and thank you for reading.

Charlotte Leblang
Charlotte Leblang is originally from Swampscott, Massachusetts and had just enough thoughts and opinions to get her through four years at a liberal arts college. A washed-up athlete, she spends her free time pushing her physical limits, watching TV, and complaining about trivial things. She’s been slowly adjusting to the Southern politeness by adding “hope you had a nice weekend” to the beginning of her emails.

Ross Lordo
I was raised in Fort Mill, South Carolina, before ultimately deciding to join in the family tradition and become a Gamecock. After creating memories of a lifetime and eventually serving as Student Body President, I graduated from the University of South Carolina in 2018 with a degree in public health and minor in business administration. I am a wannabe piano player, bicyclist, and take pride in my exquisite shower singing voice. I am excited for you to read more about this dream I am living here at the UofSCSOMG.


Dory Askins
It is such an honor to be a member of the Class of 2021. I am originally from Greenville, SC and graduated from Clemson University in May 2017. I was blessed to be a part of MedEx for a number of years and have known that I wanted to attend UofSCSOMG since high school. I am extremely obsessed with all things Clemson and fashion!

Connor Brunson
I am originally from Bluff City, Tennessee, where there is one stop light and most people wear camouflage. I dug deeper into the South in pursuit of an education, and found myself nestled in the sticky, over-warm arms of Columbia, South Carolina, where I learned about myself and the benefit of constant hydration. Since then, I have worked as a middle school teacher, bagel baker, hotel desk clerk, artist’s model, percussionist, author, and an EMT. Now, I write poetry, songs, and the occasional To-do list. I lose pens. I think most things work out. Thanks for listening.

Keiko Cooley
I am originally from Gary, IN and relocated to South Carolina in August of 2010 to attend Claflin University majoring first in the arts and subsequently changing to Biochemistry. It was during my matriculation at Claflin University that I learned of UofSCSOMG and made my decision to be trained through this program. I am excited and fortunate to have been chosen to be a member of the Class of 2021.

Mason Jackson
Class of 2021 member Mason Jackson is a Fort Mill native and a graduate of Clemson University, where he majored in microbiology and was a part of the Calhoun Honors College. He is a officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve and intends on practicing Emergency Medicine after completion of school.

Jenny Santos
I am a fourth-year medical student originally from Baltimore, Maryland. I graduated from Wake Forest University in 2015, where I first heard about USCSOMG. I plan to pursue a career in internal medicine; I am fascinated by both the problem solving and patient interaction necessary for figuring out complex clinical cases. Yes, I am a nerd and I have accepted that. I have loved living in Greenville for medical school. I live close to the Swamp Rabbit Trail, so I can usually be found running, walking or biking to breweries. Recently, I have enjoyed cultivating an awesome garden in my backyard with the help of my indoor/outdoor cat who chases small animals away.


Megan Angermayer
Megan Angermayer is an M1 from Kansas. She doesn’t have a lot of interesting facts about herself, but her husband has endless patience for flashcards, her dad is a peach farmer, her mom is an awesome accountant, her best friend is an opera singer, and her brother is an aspiring sword blacksmith. So far no one has been impaled.

Carrie Bailes
I’m a lifelong South Carolina resident originally from Clover, SC. In my undergraduate years I spent my days going to the beach and frequently tripping over cobblestones while attending the College of Charleston. I graduated in 2015 with a degree in Biology and Neurosciences and spent a year playing with rats in a neuroscience addiction lab at MUSC before continuing my education. I’m thrilled to continue my tour of the state in Greenville and am enjoying all the great spots to read outside here. I believe UofSCSOMG has an untouchable sense of community and dedication to patient care, and I’m so grateful and excited to be a part of the class of 2020!

Leanne Brechtel
I am originally from Buffalo, New York where I grew up eating real chicken wings, watching the Buffalo Bills, working as a barista and shoveling four feet of snow off my driveway each morning. I moved down south in 2013 to attend North Greenville University where I obtained a degree in biology with a focus on environmental studies. During my time at NGU I gained both a passion for health care and a love for the community of Greenville. So when I decided to attend medical school, it was no question that UofSCSOMG was my top choice. I am stoked to be beginning my journey to become a physician as a member of the Class of 2020.

Hope Conrad
A member of the Class of 2020, Hope Conrad graduated from Anderson University with a degree in biology. She likes to live a curious life through travel, study and service to others.

Alexis del Vecchio
Alexis del Vecchio is a graduate of Yale where he majored in Theater Studies. He was a professional voice-over actor before college. Since graduation, he has produced television movies, acted in national commercials, seen his original plays performed on both coasts, and founded two companies in the educational field. He has lived in Florida, Maryland, Connecticut and California, and now calls Greenville home. He never wants to leave South Carolina – why would anyone want to live anywhere else? – and is thrilled and grateful to attend UofSCSOMG.

Brantley Dick
I grew up in the small town of Hartsville, SC with a lot of land and a lot pets. I then moved on to Columbia, SC where I majored in Exercise Science and minored in French at the University of South Carolina. While there I worked several jobs, made awesome friends, and had the time of my life. After deciding on medicine, I moved down to Charleston to pursue my lifelong desire to be a waiter for a year prior to hopping on the physician career train for good. I’m a big fan of exercise, reading, cooking, traveling, attempting to learn Spanish, and jokes.

Scott Farley
I’m native Greenvillian and I don’t plan on going anywhere else anytime soon. Grew up here, met my wife in high school and got married between junior and senior of Bob Jones University where I graduated in 2016 with a pre-med degree. Currently trying to balance school, wife, friends, and a newborn, and failing miserably. I enjoy strolling through downtown Greenville and Traveler’s Rest with my wife Liz, and enjoying our endless bounty of amazing restaurants.

Irina Geiculescu
Ethnically, 100% Romanian, and nationally, 100% American, I was born in Seneca, South Carolina and have lived in the Clemson/Easley area my whole life. I graduated with a B.S. degree in Biomedical Engineering, Materials Emphasis, from Clemson University. Athlete, scholar and former competitive pianist, I try to maintain a balanced mind, body and soul. I am ecstatic and blessed to be attending UofSCSOMG and to be part of the wonderful Class of 2020, beginning the journey that propelled me into medicine: pursuing the principle of people first.

Alex Hartman
Though originally from southern California, I spent most of my childhood and youth in Irmo, SC. After studying biology and biomedical science at the University of South Carolina, I spent several years variously involved with research and teaching. Upon meeting my amazing daughter, I was inspired to pursue medicine with the hope of addressing inequities in pediatric health care.

Zegilor & Mandy Laney
Class of 2020 member Zegilor Laney and his wife Mandy Laney are both graduates of the University of South Carolina where they majored in Electrical Engineering and English, respectively. They’ve been married 9 years and have three boys aged 9, 7, and 2. They’ve lived in South Carolina all their lives. Their only request for residency is to match where there’s sweet tea.

Julia Moss
I grew up in Charleston, SC and graduated from the College of Charleston in 2015 with a degree in Biology, Health, and Neurosciences. As an undergraduate, I worked in a neuroscience lab, travelled to South America as much as possible, and volunteered at free clinics. Back in Greenville for my medical education, on the same hospital campus where I was born, I’m excited to be a part of the UofSCSOMG class of 2020.

Josh Schammel
Originally born in Albuquerque and having spent time in Minneapolis and Washington D.C., I have lived the most recent 18 years of my life in Greenville. I swam at Davidson College and graduated in 2016 with a degree in Public Health. I am forever grateful that I was able to return to my hometown to be a member of the UofSCSOMG Class of 2020. I like to spend my time traveling, enjoying movies and board games, hiking, getting constantly sunburned playing disc golf or soccer, or enjoying whatever new weird foods and craft beers I can find in the area. I am honored to be training with every one of my fellow students and can’t wait to see what the future holds!

Raychel Simpson
Raychel Simpson was born in Texas, and has since lived in Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Alabama, Hawai’i, Australia, and now South Carolina. After graduating from the College of Charleston, she followed in her father’s footsteps and commissioned in the US Air Force within the HPSP. She is an avid traveler and amateur artist who enjoys hiking and birdwatching when not studying medicine. Hummingbirds are her favorite.

Teodora Stoikov
I was born and raised in South Africa and moved to Greenville, SC with my parents when I was 10. My family is also Bulgarian and both countries have played an immense role in shaping me and allowing me to broaden my view of the world. I went to Clemson and graduated in 2016 with a B.S. degree in Microbiology-Biomedicine. In my free time you can catch me watching Friends on Netflix or spending time with friends and family at one of Greenville’s local restaurants.

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.

Zachary Waldman
Zachary Waldmanis a fourth year medical student at UofSC School of Medicine Greenville. Originally from Philadelphia, he completed his undergraduate education at The Honors College at the College of Charleston. In his spare time, he enjoys playing guitar, cooking, working on his motorcycle, and spending time with his fiancee Shelby. Next year, he will begin his general surgical training at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.


Michael Alexander
Shortly after being born in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, my family moved to Atlanta and then to Charlotte, North Carolina (where we currently reside). I graduated from the University of South Carolina (Go Gamecocks) in the spring of 2015 with a major in Biological Sciences. My time at UofSC, my diverse experiences abroad in Kenya, my family’s experience with a debilitating autoimmune disease, and my clinical shadowing and volunteering experiences brought me into the medical profession. As I enter the next four years at the UofSC School of Medicine Greenville, I’m excited to embark on a new journey with my fellow classmates while focusing on compassionate, patient-centered care.

Caitlin Li
I was born and raised in Spartanburg, South Carolina and attended Vanderbilt University for my undergraduate studies. I was heavily involved in Vanderbilt’s fencing club and musical volunteering at the Vanderbilt hospital before graduating in 2015 with a degree in biomedical engineering. I want to become a physician to help people pursue happiness in health and am honored and excited to study medicine at UofSC School of Medicine Greenville.

Ben Snyder
I was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio.  After graduating high school, I attended Liberty University in Virginia for my undergraduate studies and graduated in December of 2014 with a degree in cell and molecular biology.  At Liberty, I participated in student leadership as a Resident Assistant and Spiritual Life Director.  I met my wife through student leadership, and we got married in January 2015.  I have wanted to be a doctor since very early in life, and I am very grateful to have the opportunity to study and learn at the UofSC School of Medicine Greenville.  It is my desire to one day use medicine in missions work and to provide care to the underserved.  I am excited to share perspectives and stories throughout my education on the blog.


Alyssa Adkins
I was born in Columbus, Ohio and raised in Rock Hill South Carolina. I attended USC (GO GAMECOCKS) graduating with a major in biology and minor in anthropology before coming to Greenville for medical school. I am an avid dog lover and spend time volunteering at Greenville Humane Society and dog sitting for fellow classmates. I am honored to attend a medical school that is committed to teaching students to provide compassionate care to their patients.

Tee Griscom
I was born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee before heading to Furman University for my undergraduate studies. Football brought me to South Carolina, and I participated on the varsity team for a little over a year before deciding to focus more of my time on my studies and community involvement. I graduated Furman in May 2014 with a degree in Religion, and I believe that my background allows for a unique perspective into the lives of patients. I have been wanting to practice medicine since my youth, and I am grateful for the opportunity given to me by the USC School of Medicine Greenville to pursue that dream.

Eleasa Hulon
I am a Greenville native and a graduate from the University of South Carolina, where I studied public health. After graduating in 2013, I took a gap year and worked as a dialysis technician in Anderson, South Carolina. Also during my time off from school, I got married (nine days before medical school started)! I am currently enjoying life in the upstate with my husband and am thrilled to be a member of the Class of 2018. Follow along as I journey through these next four years at USCSOM Greenville.

Hannah Kline
I grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina before moving to Chapel Hill to spend my undergraduate career as a Tar Heel. I majored in biology, with a minor in chemistry, and consider myself extremely fortunate to have had many unique experiences in my life thus far. I worked as a research assistant at the North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center and in the Department of Genetics at UNC, interned with Carolinas Laparoscopic and Advanced Surgery Program (CLASP) at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, and spent time as a member of a Global Medical Training team that set up temporary rural medical clinics in Panama. I thrive on adventure, am a travel enthusiast, and enjoy kayaking and exploring new places in my free time. I am passionate about improving quality of patient care, and hope to pursue a career in pediatric endocrinology, anesthesia, or internal medicine. I am honored and excited to be a part of the USCSOMG Class of 2018- a group of truly compassionate, intellectual, and driven individuals.

Andrew Lee
For 17 years, I called the state of Wisconsin home (go Packers!). My parents immigrated to the United States when they were in their 20s and worked multiple jobs to give my brother (Michael) and I opportunities that they never had growing up. In 2008, I moved to Greenville, SC because I hated shovelling snow and also to attend Bob Jones University for college. I graduated in 2012 with a degree in Biology and Chemistry and afterwards, I took 2 gap years from medical school (although only 1 was by choice). During those gap years, I got engaged and married to the love of my life, Rebecca. After reappyling to medical school, I got a second chance at USCSOM Greenville to fulfill my dreams of becoming a doctor. I believe it is an extraordinary privilege to be one of the last defenses against mortality and I am honored to be in the Class of 2018 here at USCSOM Greenville to help give second chances to as many people as we can.

Noah Smith
I was raised in Charleston, SC by two quirky but wise parents who’ve helped me realize that thinking creatively and keeping an open mind are two of the biggest keys to happiness. Writing, meditation, yoga, traveling and playing basketball all help clear my mind so I can express the creativity that memorizing tons of medical facts does its best to quash. Despite the tedium, I can’t wait to treat psychiatric patients in hopes of helping them understand how wonderful their eccentricities can be when approached with the right perspective and sharing some of the wisdom I’ve gained from my parents, living in foreign countries and meditating.

Crystal Sosa
Crystal Sosa My siblings and I were born and raised in the Bronx, New York.  We are the children of Dominican immigrants who worked very hard to ensure that we pursue an education to have equal opportunity and get ahead in the United States.  Throughout high school and undergrad I had the privilege of being apart of many community service initiatives from providing clothes and food to the homeless in NYC to heading enrichment programs for youth detained in state facilities.  I graduated from Mount Holyoke College in May of 2014 with a double major in Chemistry and Psychology.  Despite the level of difficulty, I am happy to be a second-year medical student continuing to work towards a profession where I will not only impact people’s lives but where I will also be learning a great deal about the experiences of others.

Jeremiah White
Formerly from the Baltimore area, I graduated from Bob Jones University with a degree in pre-med. Having interacted through MedEx with the faculty and students, I knew the doctor USCSOMG will graduate was the doctor I wanted to become. If I’m not hitting the books, you can probably find me spending time with my better half or on the basketball court. It is an honor and a privilege to be a member of the class of 2018, and I’m excited to share my passion for emergency medicine and health education with my peers. “To whom much is given, much more shall be required.”

Jessica Williams
I am a nontraditional student from Chattanooga, Tennessee. I attended Colby College in Waterville, Maine, where I majored in Spanish. After graduating from Colby, I lived in Boston, MA for four years, where I worked as a Bilingual (Spanish/English) Domestic Violence Advocate and then as a Medical Assistant. I am in interested in global health and breaking cultural and linguistic barriers in healthcare.


Ben DeMarco
I grew up in the small Pee Dee town of Marion, South Carolina, before heading up to Durham, North Carolina, for an undergraduate education (and a few basketball games) at Duke University. After a year working in community health at Duke, I was primed to begin the study of medicine. USC School of Medicine Greenville’s attention to communities and commitment to teamwork brought me back to South Carolina (the amazing facilities didn’t hurt either). I’m interested in primary care and thinking about how physicians’ moral frameworks affect their practice of medicine. Most of all, I’m excited to be part of this new school and look forward to reflecting together with my classmates as we make our way through these formative years.

Megan Epperson
I graduated from Clemson University in 2013 with a B.A, in Biological Sciences after growing up in Alexandria, Virginia. Now, I love South Carolina and chose USC School of Medicine Greenville because the school’s mission lines up with the interests and values that attracted me to medicine. I hope to enter a primary care specialty in order to form many relationships and look at health holistically. Some of my hobbies include Bikram yoga, nutrition, spending time with friends and family, laughing, and rowing (though I haven’t found a river in Greenville big enough yet!). I feel blessed to be a part of the class of 2017, where I know I will learn from enthusiastic faculty, classmates, and a groundbreaking charter class.

Rachel Heidt
I am originally from Beaufort, South Carolina, and graduated from New York University with my B.A. in Psychology in 2009. Unsure of exactly what I wanted to do with my life, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to work, travel, and volunteer for two years while discovering my desire to become a physician. I lived in Alaska, Belgium, Australia, and Thailand before beginning a one-year post-baccalaureate pre-medical program at Bryn Mawr College in 2011. I spent the past year in Berkeley, California, working for the University of California San Francisco as the analyst for the Division of Hospital Medicine at San Francisco General Hospital, the safety-net hospital for the city of San Francisco. My interests include integrative medicine, global and community health, narrative medicine, and working with underserved populations. Other interests include hiking, yoga, and exploring Greenville and the surrounding areas with my husband. I’m thrilled to be back in my home state and to become a member of the second class at USC School of Medicine Greenville. I look forward to sharing my journey into medical school with you!

Rachel Nelson
I’m originally from Brentwood, Tennessee, and I came to South Carolina to attend college at Furman University where I was a music major, outdoor enthusiast and lover of life. I never expected to spend four more years here in Greenville, but I could not be more excited to have the opportunity to stay and be a part of this incredible program at the USC School of Medicine in Greenville! I hope that through this blog you will be able to see, as I did, a glimpse of the inspiring vision and stunning reality of this medical school, and that you will share in our innovative and hands-on journey to becoming tomorrow’s doctors.

Tori Seigler
I am from North Augusta, South Carolina, and I am a born and bred Carolina girl. When it came time for college, I happily made my way to Columbia to attend the University of South Carolina (USC). I started college in Biomedical Engineering because I figured it would be an acceptable fall back plan. The only problem was, I forgot just how dismally boring the combination of calculus and physics could become. Also, all of my medical volunteering and biology classes made me realize that medicine was actually the best match for me. I loved it. So, I made one of the more difficult decisions I’ve had to make in life and switched to biology, committing myself to a medical track. Graduating from USC with a major in biology and minor in chemistry was a big moment for me, because I was among only two or three people in my uncommonly large extended family to receive a college degree. And, I was the first to be going on to further my education. I am very excited to be starting my medical education here at USC School of Medicine Greenville on behalf of my family and myself. It is going to be an adventure and it will be difficult, but my experience here so far has made me feel that I definitely made the right choice.

Laura Simon Cook
I was born in Erie, Pennsylvania, but have lived in Greenville for the past 13 years. I graduated with a degree in Biochemistry in May 2013 at Virginia Tech, where I swam for the varsity team. My pursuit of a career in medicine began with my interest in biochemistry and physiology. I really enjoy reaching out to my community and interacting with people. I am excited to begin my medical career and make an impact at USC School of Medicine Greenville, where I can become a well-rounded, compassionate and successful physician, improving the lives of my patients.


Shea A. Ray
I am a Greenville native and graduated from Clemson University in 2011 with a B.S. in Bioengineering. My fascination with medicine began when I was nine years old and broke my arm (twice!) that summer, and the fact that my young mind always wanted to know what the inside of a person looked like. Through internships, research experiences, and fantastic interactions with physicians at the Greenville Health System, I knew that USC School of Medicine Greenville would be a place filled with physicians eager to teach and were bought into raising up the next generation of doctors. I’m honored to be a part of the Charter Class, and look forward to giving you a glimpse into the life of a medical student!

Matt Eisenstat
I was born and raised in Aiken, SC, and grew up a Clemson fan in a family of University of South Carolina fans. If all goes well (fingers crossed) I’ll be the first physician in my family. I got my bachelor’s degree in microbiology from Clemson University. I love the excitement and challenge that comes from medicine. My plan is to go into emergency medicine and doing the EMT training was really a tremendous experience for me. I love Greenville and I couldn’t be happier with my decision to go to USC School of Medicine Greenville. I also enjoy long walks on the beach. Go Tigers!!!

Eric Fulmer
I’m a South Carolina native who hails from Florence, SC. I earned a B.S. in ACS Intensive Chemistry from the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC. My interest in medical school arises from my desire to work in developing nations and improve their health care systems. I am happy to pursue my medical degree as a member of the charter class of the USC School of Medicine Greenville.

Geevan George
I lived in Greer, SC for more than 12 years and graduated from Bob Jones University in Greenville, SC, so I’m considered one of the locals. I have always wanted to be a doctor because I saw physicians care for my father as he fought brain cancer. Though the experiences were tough, I believe that you are given situations as gifts to then use to help others. I hope through my contributions of photography, I can show you the gifts that my class is given at the USC School of Medicine Greenville so that we can help others.

Maglin Halsey
I’m originally from Knoxville, TN, and found my way to South Carolina four years ago to pursue my undergraduate education at Clemson University. I graduated in May 2012 with a degree in Bioengineering, and I’m thrilled to be spending four more years in this area. I am passionate about USC School of Medicine Greenville’s commitment to community wellness and developing well-rounded doctors. I am excited to share this journey of our charter class with you.

Jennifer Reinovsky
I am a nontraditional student from neighboring Pickens County. I fully realized my passion for medicine after graduating from Furman University in Greenville, SC, and exploring other career options. I hope for gracious clarity and surplus autotelic activity. I love tea, cooking, writing, reading, swimming, and hiking. I am not certain what kind of physician I should be, but I look forward to the process of discovery here at USC School of Medicine Greenville.

Kyle Townsend
I am originally from central Florida, but wandered up here to Greenville four years ago to attend Furman University. After two years of engineering classes I decided to pursue a degree in neuroscience. My decision to attend medical school stemmed from some great shadowing experiences and the coursework in my new major. The brain is a fascinating entity, and the way it both affects and is affected by the body is an infinitely compelling subject I plan to study as a doctor for the rest of my life. The beginning of this journey has already been full of amazing experiences, and I hope my reflections do them justice.