Hamilton student Aaron Oh '17, center, observes as St. Elizabeth Family Medicine Resident Michael Redner, DO, has a follow-up visit with Robert Williams of Beaver Falls at Central New York Cardiology.

Five Hamilton juniors and seniors returned to campus early to participate in the “Week in the Life of a Resident” program from Jan. 9 to 13.

St. Elizabeth Medical Center Family Medicine Program residents worked and went about their daily routine as the students eagerly watched and learned what it’s like to work in a hospital setting.

The group started each day by meeting the residents at 7 a.m. for their morning report meeting, which included lectures by their attending physicians. One day the students attended a clinical simulation lab and watched as residents practiced their clinical skills on a medical dummy. After each day’s morning report, they separated and shadowed a resident.

The past week was important for me to see firsthand the path to becoming a doctor. Medical school and residency are important parts of the track I intend to follow.

Over the five days, the students followed residents as they did their rotation in a variety of settings, including the family medicine clinic, cardiology, surgery, intensive care unit, pediatrics and in the emergency room.

The students were able to observe a physician’s many daily tasks. Aly Skelly ’18 remarked, “This program taught me a lot about the demands of a resident and the behind-the-scenes work of being a doctor. Modern medicine requires much documentation and paperwork,” she said, “and it was great to get an insight on what doctors do when they are at work and not just seeing patients.” 

The Hamilton student participants are pre-med concentrators and hope to attend medical school in the future. Getting to know the residents personally, especially since they have recently gone through the process of medical school, was very helpful.

The residents gave advice on the medical school application process and shared helpful tips for studying for the MCAT exam.

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Aaron Oh ’18 explained, “This week was important to me because seeing these residents, some fresh out of medical school, gives me the motivation to continue on this long pre-med path.”

It was clear that there is not just one path to medicine, and many of the residents waited many years after their undergraduate years to apply to medical school.

Micheal Carducci ’17 noted, “The past week was important for me to see firsthand the path to becoming a doctor. Medical school and residency are important parts of the track I intend to follow,” he said, “however, they’re difficult to imagine as an undergraduate student.” Carducci said the experience “helped to solidify my expectations for the future.”

Few professions can match medicine in terms of the impact it has on both individuals and on the community as a whole. 

Hamilton students in the program agreed that they now have a better understanding of what they need to do before reaching their goals of becoming physicians.

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