Tell us what you do at your workplace.
As a second year resident, my year is broken up into rotations including Urology, Gen Surg and ICU. Most of my time is on surgical rotations where I’m in the OR most days of the week, taking care of inpatients, or doing clinic.
What attracted you to a career in medicine?
Initially, I got into medicine because I had done lifeguarding, lifeguarding competitions, and was teaching first aid classes. That, in combination with my biopsychology degree in undergrad, made medicine a good goal to shoot for. After starting clinical electives in third year of medical school, specializing in something surgical became obvious after loving my time in the OR. And after checking out several specialties, Urology became the obvious choice for me.
Today in healthcare it’s important to…
Have systems in place so that patients leaving the hospital have a full understanding of their problem and what to expect going forward. I find that patients who know what to expect going forward after leaving the hospital have much better quality of life and lower stress when seen in follow up. With more information, patients are able to take ownership and feel in control of their disease, instead of feeling powerless to a myriad of symptoms that they didn’t expect.
What is the best professional advice you received?
Be the first one there in the morning and the last to leave at night. Establish yourself as reliable, hard working and trustworthy and opportunities for success in life will inevitably find you.
What is your favourite memory at the Faculty of Medicine?
My favorite memory is wrapped up in my first year at the Southern Medical Program in Kelowna. Being the first class there, meeting new friends, and getting to be a part of the excitement surrounding a new satellite program of UBC was wonderful. As students, we were able to shape how the program evolved and could do this collaboratively with the doctors and staff getting the program off the ground. I wouldn’t have spent medical school any other way.
What advice to you have for current medical students?
(1) If you’re unsure of what to do in medicine, first try and figure out: medicine or surgery. After that, find a mentor you look up to; someone who loves their job, and research that specialty. Certain personalities do tend to gravitate towards specific specialties, and you want to find a career where the people around you enrich your life.
(2) Work harder than you’re used to. Make yourself useful to the residents and staff you work with. Be there early, and stay late. When CaRMS comes around, the residents and staff care more about who was a hard worker than who got that one challenging question right during the OR. You’ll be working with these people for 2-5 years in residency: they want someone they can trust and rely on, not a lazy brainiac (not that those two things are mutually exclusive!)
Bucket list item?
Go to Cape Canaveral and get front row seats for a SpaceX rocket launch. Watch the first stage land again after takeoff. Give Elon Musk a high five after. Drive away in my Tesla. Getting to do any one of those would be just fine as well.