By: Biruck Tessema, MS-1
Biruck Tessema is a first-year podiatric medical student at Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine. He is also an international delegate for PrePodiatryLife/Hallux Magazine.
During my time at Clark University in Worcester, MA, I was President of Club Soccer, a research assistant, a volunteer at Milford Regional Medical Center, a member of Women in STEM, as well as a dance choreographer. The two extracurricular activities that have had the biggest impact in my life were being a research assistant and volunteering at Milford Regional Medical Center.
The two extracurricular activities that have had the biggest impact in my life were being a research assistant and volunteering at Milford Regional Medical Center.
I joined an interdisciplinary research lab during my junior year, which had students working on projects that encompassed Biology, Math, Computer Science, and Biochemistry. I received a Sherman Fairchild Fellowship after submitting a research proposal that was reviewed by a committee of the science faculty at Clark University. I was able to use this fellowship to conduct independent research throughout my time at Clark University where I developed my laboratory skills.
That summer I gained much independence which allowed me to hone my problem-solving abilities by researching previous studies to help overcome the challenges faced in and out of the lab. In addition to working in the lab, I was also able to create and present a poster on my research to the science community in Worcester. This enabled me to increase my comfort with public speaking as well as inform the science community of advancements made in the field of Drosophila Melanogaster.
That summer I gained much independence which allowed me to hone my problem-solving abilities
The research assistant position enabled me to grow as an individual. As a volunteer at Milford Regional Medical Center, I was able to not only gain personal growth, but also positively affect my community. The first few months as a volunteer, I was a patient representative, where I made frequent rounds in assigned departments to assess patients’ needs. I would assess each individual patient and help them resolve any problems by relaying their concerns to the nurse managers. By working closely with patients in a multitude of health crises, I was able to soothe frustrated patients and make their hospital stay comfortable.
The research assistant position enabled me to grow as an individual.
After a few months, I decided to volunteer in the Elder Wellness Program which involved caring for elderly patients. During my time there, I supported patients through daily exercises and mental stimulation to prevent a decline in their physical and mental abilities. The patients would tell me their areas of pain, and I assisted them in performing therapeutic maneuvers to alleviate their discomfort. I developed a rapport with many of the patients who would look forward to my visits to share stories with me. I am very grateful for the time I spent at Milford Regional Medical Center, for it not only greatly improved my interpersonal skills, but it also enabled me to work closely with people in my community and provide comfort during difficult times.
By Biruck Tessema, MS-1
School: Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine
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