After graduating Valedictorian of my high school, I began my journey to becoming a physician. I have pursued 9 years of post-high school education and 3 degrees. I am ecstatic to say that I matched for Psychiatry residency at my number one choice at the University of Mississippi Medical Center with the hopes of pursuing a Child & Adolescent Psychiatry fellowship in the future! It’s no secret that I am passionate about serving my community and home state of Mississippi. But I also find it important to share how I got here especially in the last year.
Many of you know a little before this time last year, I didn’t know what I wanted—let alone what specialty I was meant to pursue. I was dead set on pursuing Anesthesiology, but it didn’t feel right. For the first time, I questioned my dream of becoming a physician. I wondered if I was meant to be a physician, if I was burned out, if this was what I truly wanted. How could I mess up MY plan? I’m a planner; this is what I do. But here’s the thing: I was unhappy.
Before I started medical school, I never gave myself the opportunity to recognize my talents and passions in other areas: healthcare administration, policy, advocacy, marketing, PR, & more. So, I took the time to pursue those interests. I am so excited to be graduating with my Master’s in Health Care Administration (MHA) with emphasis on executive level leadership (CEO or CMO of a hospital system)—something I’ve always wanted! I was fortunate to be mentored by the Chair of the MHA program and by the CEO of my home institution during my studies.
In addition to being a full-time student, I also spent time serving as the Marketing & Media Manager for Mississippi State Medical Association; it was truly an honor to become a best practice medical association and nationally recognized for our strides in that area during my time. I also worked as a credentialing coordinator for a physician credentialing company in the state of Mississippi while learning best business practices from an incredibly talented CEO and friend of mine. And if you know me, more is more because I function best at 100 mph. I am a participant of the American Medical Association (AMA) Foundation Leadership Development Institute, Journal of the AMA Medical Student Leadership Group, & AMA Ambassador Steering Committee.
I share all of this to say that I have had the most treasured opportunities that I have absolutely loved this past year, but my heart told me that what I miss most is taking care of people above all else! I look forward to seeing what the future holds! Who knows? Maybe my career will include high-level administration. But for now, I am just beyond excited to take care of people.
I know what my heart was telling me all along—I love people and give so much of myself to those around me. I am meant to be a physician and psychiatrist and will do my best to be a great servant leader!