For the next eight weeks, I will be interning under Dr. Lisa Newman and her team. She is a surgical breast oncologist and the director of the Breast Cancer Program. I first met Dr. Newman when she came to present in a class I was taking. I was in awe of how accomplished she is. I never thought for a second that I would ever have the opportunity to work with someone as accomplished as her.
Fast-forward a few months and I am asking the professor whose class she presented in for a letter of recommendation for internships I was applying to in the medical field. He agrees, but also suggest that I contact Dr. Newman to see if she would ever take a student over the summer. Taking his advice, I contacted her, not expecting much, but hoping she might say yes. Not even 24 hours after sending the email I received a response back saying that she would be more than happy to have me work with her and her team over the summer. Needless to say I was shocked, but also nervous and excited.
After meeting with her, we formulated a plan for the summer. Because I am a Spanish major and I am very interested in health disparities research, she suggested that I work on a project with her to inform the Latino community about breast health and breast cancer. It was a perfect way to combine my love for Spanish and my love for helping others through medicine. The other part of our plan was to allow me to shadow her and her team in the clinic and in the operating room.
This week was my first week working with Dr. Newman and her team. So far, I have followed her team in clinic. It is amazing to me how connected each physician is to each patient. It makes sense because the women coming to see these physicians have just been given the worst news: that they have breast cancer. I am excited to compare how each physician goes about interacting with patients and delivering news, either good or bad, as it is a critical component of medicine.
I look forward to seeing how our breast health presentations are received by the Latina women we will be presenting to. I have never presented to larger audiences in Spanish, especially about something as important as breast health, but I am excited for the challenge.