Over the course of my internship I think that the most important lessons I have learned have been in people. The number of people I have met this summer is irreplaceable and for that I would not trade this internship for any other. What I learned is that it is our duty to pull one another up because by helping each other get to the top we all rise!
I have met numerous individuals who were willing to do whatever they could to aid me in reaching my professional goals and I realized that this is exactly what I want to do for others: be the person who can guide them on their journey. Due to the overwhelming support that I have received during my time as an intern, I came to realize that I would’ve been very lost without it and without the connections that I have built. This caused me to set a new goal for myself. Within the next year I hope to create an online platform to provide resources and guidance to minority pre-medical students as I feel that our world needs more doctors from underrepresented populations, but that there are not enough people to lead them. As someone who is going through the process and will have fresh insight, I hope that I will be able to help others just as these doctors have helped me.
Another thing that I have learned over the course of the internship is the power of networking. While there are many people who want to help, it is up to us to TALK! When you need something you have to speak up, when you want to meet someone you have to ask, when you have an idea you have to take a risk. Before this experience, I thought of networking as going to classy events and meeting people who may one day offer you a job or making “connections” via LinkedIn. However, when I think about the time spent with the great physicians of the Hepatology department I realize just how much these physicians network on a daily basis. Physicians use their networking skills to pitch research ideas, to find the answer the perplexing clinical situations, and even to form relationships with their colleagues. This realization only solidified what I already know now: I have some work to do! In the coming months I hope to expand my social and professional network, filling it with individuals who will help me to succeed as well as individuals who I can help find their way. I plan to update my LinkedIn profile as well as make it a point to tailor my “digital footprint” to align with my professional goals. I also plan to make it a point to attend more networking events and to change my mindset when I attend them. I no longer want to approach networking as a way to search for future employment, but I also want to use my networking skills to meet like-minded individuals so that we may support one another on our journeys.