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The Internal Medicine Interest Group (IMIG) at the University of
North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences (UNDSMHS) is
the largest and most popular of the interest groups on campus.
Since internal medicine offers students such a well-rounded
background in all aspects of medicine and allows them either to
focus on primary care or specialize, it seems to attract almost all
students. The IMIG has been around for well over 10 years.
The leadership of the group is headed by two second year medical
students, an MD advisor, and a few faculty from the office of
medical education. The IMIG advisor is LaVaun McCann, MD, FACP. She
is a practicing internal medicine doctor who graduated medical
school from UNDSMHS and did her residency in internal medicine at
the University of North Dakota Affiliated Hospitals in Fargo, North
Dakota. She is very dedicated and helps set up all the meetings and
arrange the physicians for shadowing.
Each year we have many activities and meetings that expose
students to the world of internal medicine. Every fall we have a
panel of physicians from various specialties who come and talk
about their career paths and why internal medicine was their
residency choice. This gives the students insight into the many
different and exciting options available with a career in internal
medicine. In the winter we coordinate shadowing opportunities with
the local hospital and allow students to spend an afternoon with
the specialty of their choice, helping them transition from the
classroom to the clinic. This activity also helps students narrow
down what type of medicine they want to go into. During the winter
semester when we focus on the cardiovascular system, we have an EKG
review night where we bring in a cardiologist and go through EKG
cases. This helps tie in the classroom book with everyday cases
that most internists encounter. Every spring we have weekly USMLE
Step 1 review lectures that help the students better their score
and make residency matching a little less stressful.. At the end of
the year we bring in a couple of fourth year medical students who
have just matched in internal medicine to speak about their
experiences and offer advice for choosing the right residency
Our IMIG is also very involved in the community. In the spring
the IMIG and another student group help organize a health fair at
the local Walmart. This health fair offers blood pressure
screenings and glucose and cholesterol checks, performed by the
students at no cost. Both the students and the community enjoy this
event and feel it strengthens the bond between the medical school
and the citizens who need it most.
Tom Miskavige, MS-II
University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences,
June 2010 Issue of IMpact
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