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Internal Medicine Interest Group of the Month: Wayne State University School of Medicine

Wayne State

Wayne State University Internal Medicine Interest Group leadership. From L to R: Christopher Saddler, MS2; Stephanie Judd, MS4; Diane Levine, MD, FACP; Harpreet Wadhwa, MS2; David Zhen, MS2; and Jawad Khan, MS2.

The Wayne State University School of Medicine Internal Medicine Interest Group (IMIG), founded in 1981, is one of the most active specialty interest groups on campus with more than 250 student members. Since its beginning, the mission has been to provide student-centered mentorship and career development for students potentially interested in careers in internal medicine.

Our faculty advisor, Diane Levine, MD, FACP, has been instrumental in helping the IMIG student leadership achieve this mission. Serving as faculty advisor for the past seven years, she has been a role model and mentor, assisting the coordinators in developing innovative programs that expose students to the field of internal medicine. When asked about her role, she states, “I try to be a liaison between the Department of Medicine and medical students. I use my position to provide clinical, networking, and mentoring opportunities for students. Providing opportunities and connections to the department allows for the development of relationships between attending faculty and students. These relationships enrich the medical student experience and help students see what being an internist means and the gratification one realizes as an internist.”

In past years, Wayne State’s IMIG has sponsored a wide range of events including an introductory seminar to the field, a dinner with John Flack, MD, MPH, FACP, Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine, a seminar on health literacy and cultural competency, an asthma health screening fair, and our most popular event, a clinical skills night. Throughout the year, we have also offered ongoing opportunities to shadow physicians at the Detroit Medical Center hospitals and clinics. This opportunity, along with the clinical skills nights, has allowed students in their pre-clinical years to cross the chasm between the basic sciences and clinical practice and to gain a sense of what they are striving towards as student doctors and future physicians.

This year, our coordinators kicked off the year with IMIG’s traditional American College of Physicians (ACP) sponsored introductory seminar. Dr. Levine and the residents shared their experiences in the field and reasons for choosing internal medicine as a career. Our second event of the year, entitled “Pathway through Medical School,” was a seminar which focused on how to successfully navigate through both the pre-clinical and clinical years as well as how to find research, volunteer, and mentoring opportunities in internal medicine. Our third event took place in Dearborn, MI, at the ACP Michigan Chapter Annual Scientific Meeting. Each year the Michigan ACP Chapter offers student-focused sessions at their meeting. This year, with the support of Ruth Hoppe, MD, FACP, Governor of the Michigan ACP Chapter, a symposium was organized to provide an opportunity for students to present their research, patient care, and community service experiences. Miriam Levine, a second year medical student, presented her summer research that she conducted in Israel as well as her volunteer work through the Code Blue student organization. Ms. Levine said, “It was a wonderful opportunity to present my work and to also meet other students and learn about their research. To see the ACP interested in students attests to their commitment in helping us succeed, and the meeting served as a stepping stone for further opportunities during medical school.”

The most recent event that IMIG hosted was a clinical skills night, where small groups of students were taken by an attending physician to inpatient wards at Detroit Receiving and Harper University Hospitals to interview and examine patients. Harpreet Wadhwa, IMIG co-coordinator, helped organize this event and stated, “This was an opportunity for students to go to the bedside—where real medicine happens. They were able to learn various examination techniques and see patients with diseases that they were learning about in the classroom. We had over 60 students attend; it was a very positive experience.” Having received many accolades from students, the coordinators plan to host additional clinical skills nights in the future. Other events planned for the year include a seminar on organ donation, a residency panel hosted by fourth year students who have matched in internal medicine, and a state-wide ACP student-only meeting.

The 2008-2009 IMIG Coordinators are Harpreet Wadhwa, MS2; David Zhen, MS2; Christopher Saddler, MS2; and Jawad Khan, MS2. Traditionally, second-year students who have participated in the group during their first year of medical school have served as coordinators for IMIG. However, a new addition to our team this year is Stephanie Judd, MS4, a former IMIG co-coordinator who is serving as Senior Student Advisor. Together with our faculty advisor, our group strives to provide educational, research, and volunteer opportunities through IMIG and ACP, foster career development, and improve the care of the patients we serve. We look forward to continuing an already productive and exciting year and would appreciate your comments and suggestions for future events.

Stephanie Judd
Senior Student Advisor, Internal Medicine Interest Group
Wayne State University School of Medicine, Class of 2009
Email: sjudd@med.wayne.edu

Back to January 2009 Issue of IMpact

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