After graduating from Colby in 2017, I decided to work at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) doing research within the domain of healthcare delivery science. The Center for Healthcare Delivery Science at BIDMC examines innovative ways to improve existing systems within a healthcare network to improve both patient experience, provider experience, and the efficacy and value of patient care. As such, it gave me a great view of how all aspects of a hospital coalesce to deliver patient-centered care. After my time at the Center, I matriculated to Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth in the summer of 2019.
I believe that my English major has afforded me a great foundation for medicine, and an invaluable skillset that I will take with me into each patient interaction. On a basic level, nearly all career paths rely on the ability to communicate clearly and effectively, which is especially true in medicine. Majoring in English certainly helps you sharpen these fundamental skills and build upon them. On a deeper level, however, I have found that my English major has taught me the power of personal narratives and the importance of looking at issues through a variety of lenses. My professors at Colby trained me to maintain a critical eye and helped foster an inquisitive and creative mind. I believe this foundation has helped me become an effective listener to patients and consider a breadth of differential diagnoses that could contribute to how a patient presents to clinic. Just like in analyzing a text, a physical exam finding in medicine means little without considering context. This perspective will remain a cornerstone as I take care of patients in my future practice as a clinician.