Start Year: 2020
Where did you attend university/college?
The University of Georgia
Where did you attend medical school?
Duke University School of Medicine
What are your career goals?
I hope to go into Gastroenterology after finishing my Internal Medicine Residency. I really enjoyed my time on the advanced endoscopy/Biliary rotation so far, and could see myself practicing this time of medicine.
Reflections on the Duke Program
What were you looking for in a residency program?
The most important factor for me in choosing a residency program was the people that I would be working with. Having the opportunity to work with the current senior and junior residents during medical school allowed me to feel welcome, and it made the transition a lot of fun. The residents and attendings are very well rounded and professional, and I felt that I could continue to learn so much of them as I continued into my residency.
What are the strengths of the Duke Program?
While the Duke program has many strengths, I believe its primary strength is the team of people that work here. My attendings all have been extremely supportive and are happy to teach in a moment’s notice. Duke also prioritizes fellowship and networking. It has been really easy to connect with mentors to help you with your career goals. Renowned clinicians and researchers are just an email away, and are always happy to meet to chat over a cup of coffee.
What are your observations about the relationships between faculty and house staff?
In my five years here at Duke, I have always seen the relationships between house staff and faculty as professional and friendly. Aside from being willing to teach and support us, they give the residents appropriate autonomy to take care of our patients. It is always a good balance of support and autonomy which maximizes our learning!
Tell us about your co-residents. What has helped you connect, support each other, and form friendships?
Starting Intern year in 2020 was definitely a challenge in the setting of COVID-19, but forming friendships here at Duke has not been one. I’ve been fortunate to safely hang out with many of my co-residents that I meet during rotations or that I met on the interview trail. I also love that our chiefs have used technology to also help us feel more connected as well (We use GroupMe and Slack to give each other encouragement).
About Duke University and Durham
What has surprised you most about Duke?
I think I haven’t been too surprised since I came here for medical school. I will say that when I met people on the trail, they were surprised when I told them how supportive and fun the culture of the program is.
What is the best thing about living in Durham and the Triangle?
I think the best part is the combination of the food and entertainment. On a daily basis I learn about new restaurants that I need to try, and I’ve been here for 5 years! I also love the access to sports, music, and shows that are always happening. I also love having the NC State fair so close by in the fall!
How does the Triangle appeal to people of diverse backgrounds?
I grew up and lived in Mexico for five years, and I knew I wanted opportunities to be around Latin Culture. So being able to speak my first language on a constant basis is something that really drew me to Duke. Our patient population is very diverse, and I love being able to connect with people with the same culture and history.
Where did you choose to live and why?
I was fortunate to buy a house in Durham! It's awesome being able to drive 10 minutes into work without having to worry about any traffic!
What advice would you give to someone looking to move to Durham?
I would tell them that Durham is growing and constantly changing, so be ready to learn and grow with the community!
What are your interests outside of medicine?
I enjoy movies, reading (I'm on Wheel of Time book 10/14), running, and exploring breweries and restaurants with my wife.