Social Justice and Health Equity in Medical Education

Written by Christina Dawson '21, Sam Epstein '21 and Raghav Goyal '21
Barbara Ehrenreich and Deirdre English’s 1975 book, Witches, Midwives, and Healers, was the first text that the Larner College of Medicine’s Social Justice Coalition discussed in October of 2017. This excerpt sets up our charge—despite its authoritative and evidence-based veneer, the underpinnings of medicine are highly political, social, and temporal.

Studying Bacteria: How am I Supposed to Memorize All This?

Written by Jenna Dafgek '21
The hundreds of flashcards in my backpack were starting to feel ridiculous a week into bacteriology. At what point would they stop being helpful, especially if it took me hours to work through them? There had to be a better way. Luckily, there is, at least for me. Being a visual learner with a storytelling background (I write novels for fun), I decided that I needed to somehow personify these bacteria and morph them into characters rather than factoids.

Stay Creative, Find Your People, Fight for Social Justice

Written by Julia Shatten, M.D.'18
We are all sitting in the classroom, staring at the Powerpoint. Our eyes lock on the trajectory of a line graph. It increases a bit and then plummets. The graph we are staring at is a part of a lecture with some nebulous title like “Professionalism in Healthcare.” It is showing the results of a study that assessed the trajectory of empathy during medical school training.

Students in the Field: Pediatrics in Newport, Vt.

Written by Harshal Athalye '20
At the start of the rotation, I thought I had ruled out working in a rural area due to its potential isolation. But one pearl that has stuck with me from Dr. Bannach is that specialists are just a phone call away. Technology continues to close the communication gap for rural medicine, making it feel much less secluded. Though I am unsure of what my future holds in terms of medicine, after working with Dr. Bannach, I am considering rural medicine as a career path.

Students in the Field: Family Medicine in Waitsfield, Vt.

Written by Jennifer Boccia '20
It’s wonderful to have the opportunity to work with different people and get the advantage of their differing backgrounds. It’s not just valuable in terms of physical exam skills; observing the different ways and the different styles of each physician as they talk to patients and get their stories is great. Everyone has a unique style, and the more exposure we get as students to different physicians the easier it is to develop and refine our own personal touch.