It was after graduating from college that I first entertained the idea of a career in medicine. None of my post-college positions had been quite right for me and after dissecting out what I liked about each job I realized I was looking for a career which provided intellectual challenge, the opportunity to directly impact the lives of individuals, and work that made a difference.
I took my premedical classes at Goucher College in Towson, Maryland, a fantastic one-year program for people with at least a bachelor's degree who want to pursue a career in medicine. Upon completion of my premedical requirements I was off to Vanderbilt University for medical school. I enjoyed my clinical experiences tremendously and as graduation grew near I made the decision to pursue a career in Emergency Medicine.
My favorite part of this job is mystery and intrigue of being the first person to encounter a patient with a new medical problem or complaint that they have decided is too emergent to wait for routing medical care. It has provided me with great challenges and has humbled me on more than one occasion. It is a privilege to be the first physician to evaluate a new complaint, and in the emergency department I do this many times every day.
The team environment in the emergency department is a valued component of this career. I have always been drawn to team activities, from team tennis to ultimate Frisbee. The team environment that I found in the emergency department fulfilled my desire to continue to work with others in pursuit of a common goal.
The field of emergency medicine will require me to be a lifelong student of medicine. I have found that in addition to the intellectual challenges of diagnosis and treatment, I have also enjoyed learning a variety of diagnostic and therapeutic procedural skills. I enjoy the patient population that frequents the emergency department. I am excited to be surrounded by colleagues who are excited by the same clinical challenges and curiosities. I am excited to be continuing my training at Stanford, and I look forward to building a career in emergency medicine.