Hometown: Peoria, Arizona
Alma Mater: Arizona State University, majored in Psychology
Favorite Rotation So Far: I loved my family medicine rotation, but my favorite clerkship so far would have to be orthopedic surgery. My attending has been on call for most of my rotation, so I have seen and been able to participate in a wide variety of orthopedic surgeries and out-patient clinical exams and have learned a ton. It has left me feeling confident in my musculoskeletal diagnostic abilities and has allowed me to sharpen up my anatomy as well.
Lessons Learned: Patience is key and you can’t know it all. Sometimes the prepping can get to you and make you doubt yourself and abilities. However, all of my attendings have been very supportive in encouraging my learning and growth as a medical student, even when I didn’t have all the answers.
Osteopathic Benefits: I was doing OMM two to three times per day on my family medicine rotation, sometimes with some pretty dramatic and immediate results. Patients greatly appreciate the hands on care and whole patient approach of osteopathic medicine. When you have patients asking if they can schedule an appointment with you for follow up after some OMM, you know you are doing something right.
Perceptions of Tucson: Tucson is an amazing place to be if you like the outdoors, great food variety, and caring preceptors. I love Arizona, and plan on completing my residency and practicing here once I have that DO after my name.
Future Goals: I’m married to a Neonatal/Pediatric Intensive Care Unit nurse and we hope to one day open our own clinic to serve the homeless.
Eastern New Mexico
Hometown: I consider Las Vegas, NV my hometown, but I am originally from Mexico.
Alma Mater: Purdue University; B.S. in Biology with concentration in Microbiology and Immunology
Why BCOM?: BCOM’s mission and desire to make a positive impact in the border town region truly resonated with my personal interests. I like the philosophy behind osteopathic medicine and the way in which patient care is approached. Not to mention that I always found OMM very interesting and thought that having those additional skills would only help provide better care for patients.
Favorite Rotation So Far: Obstetrics/Gynecology. There is so much variety in this specialty; it is the perfect combination of surgery, pathology, preventive care, and in-office procedures. You also get continuity of care and to build lasting relationships with patients, not to mention that participating in the process of bringing new life into this world is a wonderful feeling and a true privilege.
Lessons Learned: It has been a very humbling experience to see firsthand the amount of trust patients put on their doctors when they’re going through their most vulnerable times. Regardless of what rotation you are in, every patient you encounter is a new opportunity to learn, and every day is a continuous reminder that studying and working hard is crucial so that in the future I can give the best care to my patients.
Perceptions of Eastern New Mexico: People are very kind and welcoming. Everyone is very happy to see medical students in the area and they’re eager to help our education in any way they can. The preceptors have all been awesome and I’ve had the unique opportunity to build great relationships with them.
Free Time Fun: Sleeping, spending time with my husband and loved ones, going for runs, and playing soccer.
Hometown: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Alma Mater: Denison University; majored in Biology
Why DO?: The healthcare field is rapidly changing and one of the recent trends is patients preferring to have doctors that can take a holistic approach to their well-being. Patients want their doctors to provide well rounded healthcare solutions, not only treating their illnesses but also treating their mind and spirit. The osteopathic philosophy helps meet those needs, and really appealed to me in the application process.
Favorite Rotation So Far: All of my rotations have been amazing for different reasons. Obstetrics and gynecology was an awesome rotation as I was placed in Espanola, New Mexico. This area of New Mexico has unique challenges to its healthcare system, and it was a great experience to treat patients in this setting. My preceptor on this rotation became a role model for me, and it was an honor to learn medicine from her. Surgery has been a challenging but rewarding rotation as I have learned so many new skills, such as suturing and surgical technique. My preceptors have really pushed me to become a stronger clinician.
Lessons Learned: How important the human connection is in treating patients. Empathy and trust are crucial traits that doctors must have, and simply taking the time to get to know your patient can have huge impacts on outcomes.
Perceptions of Albuquerque: Moving to Albuquerque for my clinical rotations was a great decision. The city is a center of diversity, and everyone I have met has been very friendly. I have been very impressed with the hospitals I have rotated at, and I have enjoyed getting to know the city over the past few months.
Free Time Fun: In my free time I enjoy hanging with friends in Albuquerque, playing video games, and watching various shows on TV. My favorite movie (besides Star Wars of course) is Casablanca.
Hometown: Mesa, Arizona
Alma Mater: Arizona State University; majored in Biological Sciences
Why BCOM?: I chose BCOM because I ultimately want to end up practicing in the Southwest and attending a school like BCOM, provides the location necessary to maintain contacts in this region. Getting to use Spanish also drew me to the school. I also wanted to learn osteopathic medicine because I felt that its focus on anatomy and function would benefit me in the future as a surgeon in whatever sub-specialty.
Rotations Completed So Far: I have completed psychiatry, OB/GYN, surgery, and internal medicine. My favorite rotation has been surgery and I’m really looking forward to orthopedic surgery.
Lessons Learned: I’ve learned that the physical exam is more important than lab values and that taking full advantage of the free food at the hospital saves a lot of money.
Perceptions of Las Cruces: Being from the desert, I love Las Cruces. As a Phoenix area native, I have loved the small-town feel of Las Cruces and have really become used to the great food and weather here.
Free Time Fun: I love wrestling with my 3-year-old daughter and spending time with my wife. My favorite sports and things to do are golfing, fishing, baseball, snowboarding, and wakeboarding.
Future Plans: I want to end up practicing here in the Southwest in New Mexico or Arizona in some type of surgical sub-specialty.
Hometown: Independence, Ohio
Alma Mater: Elon University; studied International Studies and Art and University of Nevada; majored in Biology.
Favorite Rotation So Far: While I hate to pick favorites, I must say that pediatrics has been my favorite! After working as an ER scribe and seeing pediatric patients, I was a little apprehensive about the specialty. I worked with Dr. Gutierrez, who has been practicing pediatrics in El Paso for 39 years. He has an amazing talent and a love of his specialty that was clearly visible from day one. He made each day so enjoyable, his passion was easy to soak up. He showed me that if you have a passion for your specialty, any day at work never really feels like you are at just a job. I learned a lot about the practice of medicine and how to increase positive relationships with patients.
Lessons Learned: My most important lesson for my own success in rotations has been to have and show confidence in both the patient’s room and in front of the preceptor. In terms of the most important lesson for patient care: Look at the patient and not just the written information in front of you; don’t underestimate lab values; it is important to take the time to ensure the patient has someone to listen to their health concerns and that they understand the labs or the subsequent tests.
Perceptions of El Paso: I am impressed with the fact that El Paso is a relatively larger community, but still has aspects of a small town.
Free Time Fun: Working out, including at the gym and swimming laps; playing with my dog, Brutus; watching football, and exploring the area.
Surprising Fact: I have been playing the clarinet for over 20 years and went to Disney World three times to perform.