Written by KATHARINE HEFFNER
I will never forget my first time in the operating room. Suited up in scrubs, a mask, and scrub cap, I stood by the anesthesiologist and watched the surgeon make the incision. A thyroidectomy is a common procedure, but seeing a human throat held open by retractors for the first time was disconcerting. I went through my mental checklist: don't lock your knees, remember to breath, get off the step if you feel faint, and tell the OR nurse if you need to step out of the room. It was both an amazing and humbling experience to watch surgery for the first time. I admired how the OR team worked like a well-oiled machine. The surgeon skillfully removed a thyroid while quizzing a third year medical school on the anatomy of the neck, the surgery techs knew which instrument to hand the surgeon without instruction, and the nurse kept track of everything going on in the room. Even though I initially felt out-of-place and nervous, I was already excited for my next shadowing appointment in the OR.
Since my first experience in the operating room, I’ve had the opportunity to shadow pediatric surgeons, watch hernia repairs, in-patient retinal surgery, attend multiple days of clinic with a variety of specialist, and visit with numerous experts at the Department of State Health Services. Applying for Health Careers Mentorship Program (HCMP) is by far the best thing I have done for my pre-medical education at UT.
Interested in intensive doctor shadowing and exploring public health at the Texas Department of State Health Services? Health Career Mentorship Program (HCMP) invites you to join us at one of our information sessions.
Applications go out October 14th!
For more information visit our website: http://blogs.utexas.edu/uthcmp/
Or find us on facebook: www.facebook.com/hcmput