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Visit Mentors' Round Table to read our interviews of women in the fields of science and health. These are women of varying levels of experience and backgrounds, brought to the table to answer your questions about everything from work-life balance to financial management. Read on, be inspired, and leave them (and us!) a comment!

Newest Interviews: Ecologist, MD Student 1 (2nd year) , MD Student 2 (2nd year)  , Optometry Student and Speech Pathologist

Check back soon! More to come!

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Fourth Year D.O. Student

Studying to become a Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.) is very similar to studying to become an Doctor of Medicine (M.D.). However, there are several differences. For more on this route to a medical career see the Osteopathy career page.

Below is an interview from a fourth year D.O. student, preparing to enter the world of residency. We hope it helps you learn more about osteopathy!

Interview with a Fourth Year D.O. Student

What is your career?

I am currently in my fourth year at NYCOM and am scheduled to graduate this May and enter a pediatric residency program in July.

Were there any obstacles you had to face in your training or later career?
 
Aside from the general stress of medical school that everyone faces, I became pregnant in the summer of third year and had my son at the beginning  of my last rotation of third year.  I really wanted to graduate on time, so to ensure I graduated with my class I only took 3 weeks off (my 4th year vacation.) I came back after 3 weeks to working in the hospital and had 3 exams that were coming up at school. Luckily my mom was able to baby sit my son during the day. That at least helped to ease some maternal guilt and worrying.

Have there been any problems in your work life or training that have arisen because of your religion?
 
During my first year of medical school there were issues with the attendance policy and the high holidays. Luckily there were a number of religious/traditional students and we worked it out with the school. I was lucky to do my rotations at hospitals that knew about shabbat and were considerate of my need to leave early on Fridays and not being there on Saturdays or Holidays. However, there were times that I arrived home 5 minutes before candle lighting.

What do you like best about your career? What do you like least?

I like seeing children get better. There is something very special about saying goodbye to a child who you took care of in the hospital. I learned early on that you don't even need to speak the same language to make a special connection with a child and his/her family. I can't say I enjoy vaccinating, drawing blood or doing any procedure that causes pain or scares the child.

Are you married?

Yes, I got married in between college and medical school.

Do you have children; how many?
 
One baby.
 
How do you balance family and work life?
 
It can be tough, but I never wanted to be a stay at home mom. I consider myself to be very lucky, my mom takes care of my son during the day. It takes away a lot of the worrying.

What does your spouse think about your career?
 
My husband is great - We met in college while taking pre-med classes and have been going through all of it together.

What does your family think about your career?
 
I don't think my parents wanted me to go to medical school but they are incredibly supportive and proud of me.

How do you handle the financial stress of training?
 
I try not to think about it. Student loans are paying for medical school and you learn to spend carefully when it comes to living expenses and spending money. I was fortunate enough to go to undergrad on a full scholarship.

Are things turning out the way you planned or are they different? Is your career different than what you expected when you chose it?
 
Having a kid changes your priorities. I could no longer feel comfortable choosing the "best" residency program if it meant moving away from my family and leaving my son to a baby sitter or having a long a commute and seeing my son even less. Not everyone has the support system that I am so fortunate to have. I learned that especially in New York there are plenty of great career options around, even if it asn't what I had originally thought of.

Do you have any advice for students aspiring to be where you are?
 
Hard work does pay off and always be professional and respectful, it can take you far.

If you could do this over again would you?
 
I love what I do but that answer can change based on the day. Some days it's absolutely yes I would do it again, on a bad day I question myself. Most medical students I know frequently ask themselves "why did I do this"?

Is there anything you would change?
 
No.

Do you have any role models you look up to?

There are various people I look up to, all for different reasons.  I like to think that anyone who I am close with is my role model in some form.

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