So far, my experience in the summer shadowing program has already been incredible. It has been a great privilege to be able to work with Dr. Bordeianou, Nurse Practitioner Leiba Savitt, and the team of colorectal surgeons at MGH. As I mentioned in my pre-departure post, I have not yet worked in a hospital environment, so this internship serves a very important purpose as I begin to plan the future direction of my career. Thankfully, my experience has already been eye-opening and inspiring, and for that reason I can confidently say that my interest in medicine has increased enormously since starting the program.
Until now, when I am not shadowing in the operating room, I have been spending my time helping out with clinical research projects conducted by the department. Specifically, I have been working on studies to assess patients’ quality of life after surgery. For me, being able to contribute to these projects has been so interesting for a variety of reasons. First, I am really thrilled to be learning a great deal about the specific operations we are researching as well as the overall process of conducting clinical research. Additionally, it is incredible to contribute to work that has the potential to directly impact the lives of patients. Overall, this component of the internship has both been fascinating and meaningful.
In addition, I have been fortunate enough to shadow surgeons in the operating room and actually watch the procedures which we are helping to research. I have already observed multiple surgeries, and this has been truly eye-opening. These surgeons are incredibly skilled, and it is so inspiring to watch them work so hard to apply their seemingly endless knowledge and tremendous technique towards their passion for helping patients. It is the combination of my interest in medical science with the strong desire to directly help others that has led me to explore medicine, and watching doctors embody these qualities in their work has further peaked my excitement about such a career. Additionally, not only have I been lucky to observe the amazing work these physicians do, but I am also fortunate enough to interact with and learn directly from them. Of the surgeons which I have shadowed, nearly all of them have made an effort to teach me about what they are doing. I was originally surprised that these physicians are so willing to interact with and teach so much to an undergraduate such as myself, but I am so grateful for it. Their efforts have genuinely impacted my experience for the best.
Overall, I would say that this combination of research and shadowing has really opened my eyes to the wonders of medicine, making me more and more excited about a prospect of such a career. For that reason, this internship is turning out to be such a valuable experience. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the summer has in store!