Cameron Oswalt, MD

Start Year
2018

Basics

Hometown
Woodstock, GA

College/University
Duke University

Medical School
Wake Forest School of Medicine

What are your career goals?
Still trying to figure it out! I know I want to go on to fellowship, but I am pretty undifferentiated at this point. I am also really interested in global health and medical missions.

What did you do the summer before internship? 
My wife and I had our first child, so we road tripped around the Southeast to show him off to friends and family. And slept whenever we could. Mostly just tried to figure out being first-time parents and enjoyed time with family!

I continue to be impressed by the diversity of people that call Durham home. That fact holds true with my intern class, and as we experience and learn more and more about Durham, we are blown away by how many different types of people choose to call it home. From all of the different backgrounds that the undergraduate program attracts to the varying patients that are treated at the hospital, Duke is truly a diverse and welcoming place.

Cameron Oswalt

Reflections on the Duke Program

What were you looking for in a residency program? 
My ideal residency program was one that pushed me to be the best physician possible and at the same time allowed me to pursue my passions outside of the hospital. I wanted to train in an environment that both challenged me and supported me with all that residency brings. Additionally, I plan to pursue competitive fellowship training and was interested in being involved in an immersive Global Health program. I found all of those things and more at Duke and have not looked back since.

What are the strengths of the Duke program? 
Training at Duke allows you to learn and practice in a demanding yet supportive environment that is unique because your teachers and mentors are leaders in their fields and are shaping the future of medicine but at the same time are genuinely interested in your own career as a physician. Besides the competitive fellowship match, the camaraderie amongst the Duke family, and the pleasures of living in Durham, Duke's program is one that allows you to find your "and." You feel well prepared as a physician but also supported and encouraged to find and pursue the other aspects of health care besides taking care of patients that allow for fulfilling and meaningful career.

What are your observations about the relationships between faculty and house staff? 
As I continue to meet more faculty and house staff, I am reminded more and more about how special of a place Duke is and how blessed I am to train at such a remarkable place. My co-residents are supportive and encouraging, and I could not even begin to count how many people have already offered to keep our new baby for an evening to give my wife and me a break. The faculty at Duke amaze me by all they have achieved, their immense fund of knowledge, their compassion for patients, and how they want to see me and my co-resident succeed and pursue our passions. I could not begin to imagine a better team to work with than the Duke family.

Tell us about your co-interns. How long did it take to connect? 
We bonded very quickly from day one of orientation, and I was impressed by the diversity of our intern class. I had a little bit of anxiety about starting intern year with a new baby, but I was surprised to find other interns with families in my class and also a good mix of individuals from all stages of life. I have enjoyed and been inspired by hearing my co-interns' stories and what has led them to medicine. As I start each new rotation, I feel like I am working with another close friend. There is always some new outing or event our class is organizing, and my only regret is that I cannot go to everything!

What has surprised you most about Duke? 
The two things I have been surprised by most in my first couple of months at Duke are the humility that has been demonstrated and the support I have received. When I thought about the weight that the Duke name carried, I worried that I would be overwhelmed and unprepared. While both of those things may be a little bit true, I have been amazed by the combination of brilliance and humility that exists in everyone that works at Duke and the degree to which people go out of their way to provide exemplary care to patients and also care for you as a person and trainee.

About Duke University and Durham

What's best about living in Durham and the Triangle? 
For us, Durham is the perfect mix between smaller town and big city. You don't have to deal with the inconveniences of being in an overcrowded and expensive city, but you also get the simple pleasures of living in a small town. Durham is the perfect size for us, and there is always something new to try or do. We particularly enjoy frequenting the Durham Farmer's Market, going on hikes, and making a quick trip to the beach. The food scene in the Triangle is also quite impressive, and we love to try new places to eat.

How does the Triangle appeal to people of diverse backgrounds? 
I continue to be impressed by the diversity of people that call Durham home. That fact holds true with my intern class, and as we experience and learn more and more about Durham, we are blown away by how many different types of people choose to call it home. From all of the different backgrounds that the undergraduate program attracts to the varying patients that are treated at the hospital, Duke is truly a diverse and welcoming place.

Where did you choose to live, and why? 
We chose to buy a townhome on the southeastern side of Durham and close to Southpoint Mall. My wife got a job in Raleigh (another perk of living in the Triangle!), so we are little bit closer to that. It's a 15 minute or less drive to the hospital and a quick shot to get downtown. We picked our place primarily for the safety and convenience it provided.

Based on your life, what advice would you give about moving to Durham? 
Durham really does have anything you could want. And if for some reason you cannot find it, Raleigh & Charlotte are not too far away either. From experiencing life in Bull City as a single individual and with a family, I want to assuage any fears about the living/working environment. Durham has whatever you could need for any age/stage, you will develop an attachment for the city, and you will make countless memories with all the city has to offer!

What do you like to do outside of medicine? 
Where to start? As I mentioned, my wife and I have a new baby, so I love spending time with them and watching our little guy grow up. We are very involved in our local church, and that's a big part of our lives as well. Additionally, I love all things having to do with athletics, particularly soccer. Whether that be playing or watching, there really is no sporting event you could not convince me to take part in. I also love running, hiking, and exploring new places. Though residency is not necessarily the most conducive place for this, I have a huge travel bug and love experiencing new cultures and trying new foods!

Parting thoughts? 
Please feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions. I cannot brag on Duke or Durham enough!