Dr. Erkeda DeRouen talks to Dr. Erika Aragona who is a double board-certified family physician in osteopathic and allopathic medicine. She also serves as a faculty member at the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine. Today Dr. Erkeda chats with Dr. Aragona about how to set yourself apart during medical school interviews and what students can do to advocate for women’s health.
[02:58] Becoming Human in Patient Interactions
[04:40] Cultivate Passions Outside of Medicine
[07:26] Letting Your Personality Shine in Interviews
[16:41] Dr. Aragona’s Advocacy for Women’s Health
[20:25] How Can Students Advocate for Women’s Health?
[28:15] Best Advice that Dr. Aragona Has Received
Becoming Human in Patient Interactions
When we’re too engrossed in the clinical side of medicine, we sometimes forget to connect with patients. We also lose sight of our personal passions instead of making time for them. Being a physician or a student does not make up the whole of your identity. By embracing our other interests, we become better doctors too. Life outside of medicine grants new perspectives and helps us relate better to our patients.
How to Stand Out in Medical School Interviews
Test scores and relevant experiences are certainly important but it’s not the only thing medical schools look for. Admissions committees prefer well-rounded individuals who can showcase their personalities. Allow them to get to know you by talking about projects and experiences that matter to you, even if it’s not directly related to medicine. How did these opportunities help you develop skills and traits? Highlight strengths that you can utilize for your own and for your future patients’ benefits.
Making a Difference in Women’s Health
As a student, Dr. Aragona wasn’t fond of OGBYN. But when she became a mother herself, she finally understood what it meant to give birth and to raise children. She felt supported by other moms and wants to do the same for others. There is value in simply listening to women to make sure they feel heard while providing the support that they need.
Students who feel strongly about this cause can start small by joining organizations that support women. Whether it be an online group or a local community, students can actively participate. If there is no accessible organization, why not create one yourself? There is always a way to contribute, no matter how big or small.