Earlier this year, the New York Chapter of the American College of Physicians (NYACP) held a poster competition, and one of our students ended up earning a first-place award for his.
Adam Johnson, a fourth-year American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine (AUC) student, grabbed first place in the “clinical vignette” competition category for his poster, titled Levamisole-Cocaine Induced Agranulocytosis. He was the only author. The competition was in February 2015.
Win Leads to Invite to National Conference
Adam’s poster described the presentation of this unique type of patient, how to identify signs and symptoms, and the importance of efficient treatment with an antibiotic regimen, among other topics. Ultimately, after the New York event, Adam was invited to present at the national American College of Physicians (ACP) conference, slated for May 2016.
“I was the only international medical school student at the NYACP conference, and I felt good—and proud—about representing our school and my fellow students,” Adam says. “It made everyone notice how motivated we are. Plus, being invited to attend made me feel, as a medical school student, very accepted in the community at large.”
Mingling with Doctors and Experienced Residents
But winning for his poster wasn’t the only value that Adam got out of the event.
“Attending conferences is always a great experience,” Adam says. “Not only do we get to view and participate in lectures on the newest updates on disease management and hear lectures from renowned professors and doctors from around the state and country, we also get to mingle with residents and experienced doctors. And these residents and doctors are always more than willing to mentor and give any advice.”
Plus, he said, it allows medical school students to learn more about their desired medical specialty, as well as the ins and outs of the administrative side of practicing medicine.
“That’s important, especially when it comes to learning about the future of medicine in our country and how to improve the healthcare system by practicing better and more efficiently,” he says.
Paying It Forward
To Adam, research gives medical professionals a chance to work with others toward a common goal—improving healthcare—while simultaneously adding to their own knowledge base.
“Research not only allows us to contribute to our profession while working toward a common goal, but it allows us to learn through self-motivation,” he says. “It’s very easy to sit and watch or listen to a lecture, but when you’re motivated to actually research a project, you’ll learn much more than you normally would—because you’re putting the onus on yourself to follow through and complete the project.”
In the end, he says, it’s all about passing on knowledge and helping the medical community at large—a philosophy that aligns well with the idea of collaboration, one of AUC’s central tenets.
“The passing on of knowledge in the medical profession has dated back to the era of Hippocrates, so throughout medical school I’ve always taken opportunities to pass on my knowledge, tutor, or contribute to my community,” he says. “Research is another great way we can do this.”
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Posted November 16, 2015 12:37 PM