My ultimate decision to become a physician began at Columbia University, where I worked in Dr. Mehmet Oz’s Complementary and Alternative Medicine research group. I earned my medical degree at the University of Virginia and received the C Richard Bowman Scholarship Award for clinical excellence and induction into the Arnold P. Gold Foundation for Humanism in Medicine.
During medical school, I unfortunately had a crash course in the “hidden curriculum” in medicine. My father succumbed to metastatic lung cancer. My experience and observations throughout my Dad's final months ingrained in me the importance of empathy and compassion in medicine. I saw how invaluable it can be to have a physician you trust and to whom you can relate while navigating the overwhelming challenges of illness and disease.
Simply put, I learned what it meant to suffer. And eventually I understood how to best ease the suffering in healthful ways...