Canvassing Medical Specialties
Before matriculating last fall, Gabriel Linden ’20 received an email telling him that he was selected to participate in the Career Center's First-Year Forward (FYF) program on campus. FYF is designed to encourage first-year students to pursue career related opportunities over the summer break following their first year. FYF helped Linden construct a strong resume, gave him interviewing tips, taught him how to write a cover letter, and allowed him access to the Hamilton alumni network, eventually leading him to his summer internship in medicine.
Although FYF encourages its participants to investigate unexplored fields of work, Linden stuck with medicine as his desired field of interest. “I know that getting clinical experience is very important for pre-med students, so I decided to do some shadowing. From there, I just had to figure out who I could trail,” he said.
This summer, Linden is shadowing eight different physicians in various specialties, getting a close-up look at what goes on behind the scenes for an array of doctors. He shadows patient-doctor interactions and even observes surgeries live from inside the operating room. Linden is working with multiple organizations, some of which include St. Luke’s Hospital, Faxton Cancer Center, Community Memorial Hospital and Hamilton Orthopedics. Because he is interning with so many different organizations, there is no typical work day for Linden.
For three weeks, Linden worked with orthopedic surgeon and former soccer coach Dr. Raymond Meeks, shadowing him in the private practice twice a week, and then accompanying him as a bystander in the operating room for another two days.
Hometown: Madison, N.Y.
High School: Madison Central School
Later, Linden worked a full week with oncologist/hematologist Dr. Alicia DeTraglia (Favale) '93, learning about the complicated treatment of blood diseases and cancers. Linden first met DeTraglia through the Hamilton network, and she has since put him in contact with six other doctors, who are all colleagues of hers.
He spent a full day with radiation oncologist Dr. Lawrence, and still has five doctors left to observe: Dr. Max, a general surgeon; Dr. Brehaut, a primary care physician; Dr. Namassiuaya, who works in infectious disease; Dr. Pellechia, a GI endoscopist; Dr. Kaul, a pulmonologist.
“That is the great thing about this internship; I have gone into each specialty with zero expectations, and left with eye-opening experiences that I would never have predicted,” said Linden.
Through his work this summer, Linden has become more assured in his decision to pursue medicine and science, interests he has cultivated since childhood.