Pre-Health Advising

Features

June 2022 Featured Alum John Masembe

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About John

John Masembe graduated from UW Bothell in Spring 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Health Studies. John is a Clinical Patient Navigator/Case Manager at Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center/Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. Connect with John on LinkedIn to learn more about his work advocating for patients.

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Tell us more about what you're doing currently.

In my current role I offer individualized assistance to patients, families and caregivers to help overcome health system barriers and facilitate timely access to qualified medical and psychosocial care. The best part of my job is that I get to work with diverse patient populations and my area of focus is Black African Americans where I get to alleviate barriers to treatment, i.e., housing, insurance, financial assistance, cultural brokering and advocating for equitable care practices. Currently I'm in the process of applying for a Master in Health Care Quality at Georgetown University. This program will give me the tools to distinguish quality improvement, patient safety, leadership, organizational, and research theories/standards applicable to healthcare.

What resources did you find most helpful when it came to career or graduate/professional school exploring, preparing, and applying?

A lot of the credit goes to the Health Studies program because it taught me the fundamentals in health care systems as well as setting the foundation that allowed me to identify the social determinants of health, i.e., income, race, location and access and why there's a huge disparities in healthcare outcomes; most especially in underserved communities in BIPOC patient populations. In addition the lack of diversity in leadership positions in health organizations has also been a driving factor in my chosen career path through personal experiences both as a patient and healthcare professional. There's not a lot of people that look like me - a young Black man - so I had to learn how to network and identify key players in the organization's leadership who I could reach out to and learn from as well as build strong relationships that'll help guide me through this journey. I learned a lot of this tips in this program and I've been able to apply them in this professional career.

What was your favorite thing about being a UW Bothell Husky?

My favorite was learning that there's so many other young people out there who're just as passionate about health care systems as I was. I also appreciate the compassion and support from the staff as well as my professors who were at times tough when they needed to be but also patiently took the time to make sure to set me up for success. At the time of my graduation Covid-19 was just breaking out and everyone was scared, anxious and lost but everyone played their part to make sure students were safe.

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The campus was also relaxing too - so many places to sit down and be quiet to read, relax, or meditate as you prepared for a test or next class.

If you could go back to your first day at UWB, what advice would you give yourself?

Looking back, I would tell myself that the anxiety, uncertainty, feeling and emotions are all part of the learning process. Trust in yourself and the process, it will all be ok!

Thank you, John!

For your advice and advocacy for patients seeking access to the healthcare they need!


May 2022 Featured Alum Yasmin Guzman

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About Yasmin

Yasmin Guzman graduated from UW Bothell in Spring 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Health Studies and a minor in Health Education & Promotion. Yasmin is a Clinical Research Coordinator at Seattle Children's Research Institute. Connect with Yasmin on LinkedIn to learn more about her journey to UWB and beyond, including her profile on the UWB website as a proud UW Bothell and Husky Promise student.

Tell us more about what you're doing currently.

Since graduating, I have been at Seattle Children's for soon to be 3 years this summer. I started off as an intern and then came on as a full-time employee. I am in the process of determining my next step - a Ph.D in Clinical Psychology or a Master's in Social Work/Psychology.

What resources did you find most helpful when it came to career or graduate/professional school exploring, preparing, and applying?

I have found the resources often shared during my time at UWB to be very helpful - learning how to navigate and use LinkedIn, Handshake, and resume/career building sessions.

What was your favorite thing about being a UW Bothell Husky?

The small campus size significantly affected the ability to create strong personal and professional relationships with students, faculty, and staff.

If you could go back to your first day at UWB, what advice would you give yourself?

Take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way and try new things, even if it means stepping out of your comfort zone. Push yourself out of your comfort zone. That's where the good life experiences come.

Thank you, Yasmin!

For your advice and impact on current and future Huskies!


April 2022 Featured Alum Van Nguyen

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About Van

Van Nguyen graduated from UW Bothell in Spring 2020 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and minors in Chemistry & Neuroscience. Van is a first-year medical student at the University of Washington School of Medicine. Connect with Van on LinkedIn to learn more about his background & experiences, and check out his featured documents for more information on his research and Husky 100 award!

Tell us more about what you're doing currently.

Since med school started, I've been learning and growing more than I ever have. The first month or two was particularly challenging for me because of the drastically increased pace in learning. I think I spent much more time figuring out what worked for me in terms of my academic routine, rather than learning the content itself. Luckily, I have some amazing classmates, and it definitely helped knowing that I wasn't alone in the challenges I was facing.

I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly UW provided clinical exposure to its students, allowing us to practice all the physical exam skills we've been learning in our workshops on real patients. That's definitely been my favorite part of the curriculum. Between classes, clinical skill workshops, hospital morning interviews, one-on-one learning at the clinic, student-led interest groups, and volunteering, the past few months have been chaotic in all the best ways possible. To keep myself grounded and mentally sane, I like to dance, play video games, do some writing, and hang out with my friends/colleagues (which usually ends up turning into a mini study session anyway because we're all insufferable nerds).

I love what I do, and I wouldn't trade it for anything else in the world.

What resources did you find most helpful when it came to career or graduate/professional school exploring, preparing, and applying?

Depending on your career path, the preparation and application process for grad/professional school will be vary. For medical school, I personally liked The Medical School Headquarters and the YouTube videos posted by Dr. Ryan Gray - the founder. He provides incredible insights on the application process and how to approach certain aspects like the personal statement and interview. Med School Insiders is another good channel on YouTube to check out.

Whatever you do, please stay away from Pre-Med Reddit, Student-Doctor Network, and other similar pre-med forums for the sake of your mental well-being.

What was your favorite thing about being a UW Bothell Husky?

I owe much of my current success to the guidance of my mentors, the support of my colleagues, and everyone else at UW Bothell who shaped my perspective that influenced who I am as a person today.

I think if you ask most UW Bothell alum, they will say very similar things - something along the line of "getting access to a high quality education neatly packaged in an intimate learning environment and tight knit community..." or the one Subway on-campus, if you're into that sort of thing.

If you could go back to your first day at UWB, what advice would you give yourself?

Learn for the sake of learning, surround yourself with like-minded individuals who will push and inspire you to challenge your boundaries, and most importantly - take your time. You don't have to have it all figured out, and truth be told: I don't think anybody does. That's what keeps things interesting and exciting!

Thank you, Van!

For continuing to inspire your fellow Bothell Huskies!


March 2022 Featured Alum Sebastien Khoutxaysana

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About Sebastien

Sebastien Khoutxaysana graduated from UW Bothell in Spring 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Health Studies and a minor in Health Education & Promotion. Sebastien works in the Admissions Office at UWB processing admission applications and previously worked as an Advisor at Cascadia College. Connect with Sebastien on LinkedIn to learn more about his dedication to UWB and student success!

Tell us more about what you're doing currently.

I am currently working in higher education to support undergrad students here at UW Bothell. As an Admissions Specialist, I process incoming applications to the university by ensuring students meet admissions requirements. This includes entering transcripts, test scores, and program specific documents into our records system. I also collaborate with Transfer and First Year Advisors to ensure that the student completes their application.

What resources did you find most helpful when it came to career or graduate/professional school exploring, preparing, and applying?

The resource I found to be the most helpful is LinkedIn. Being able to connect with others provides great insight and tips/tricks when applying to positions. Additionally, it's a great way to connect and speak with individuals in your desired field/position of interest. This allowed me to prepare and research for upcoming job interviews.

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What was your favorite thing about being a UW Bothell Husky?

The community and collaborative aspect of UW Bothell were hands down my favorite things about being a UW Bothell Husky. Having smaller class sizes made it easier to interact with my colleagues and professors. On top of that, engaging thought provoking conversations in class and online made the learning experience innovative. My interactions with my professors were always sincere and heartfelt as they always provided academic assistance, resources, and even opportunities such as internships and jobs. Through this engagement, I was able to secure both a public health internship and career as a student and even post-grad.

If you could go back to your first day at UWB, what advice would you give yourself?

Utilize campus resources to set yourself up for the future including Career Services and on-campus job opportunities!

Thank you, Sebastien!

And thanks for bringing in all our new Husky Family members through your work in Admissions!


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Congratulations Post!

Anna Le, MCAT Ladder Scholar for 2021-22

UW Bothell's own Anna Le, a senior majoring in Biology and minoring in Health Studies has been selected as a 2021-22 MCAT Ladder Scholar! Anna received a full scholarship to take the full MCAT Ladder Preparation course. Congratulations, Anna!


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February 2022 Featured Alum Casey Cummins 

About Casey

Casey Cummins graduated from UW Bothell in Spring 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Health Studies and minors in Biology & Chemistry. He is currently completing the foundations phase of medical school at the Spokane site of the University of Washington School of Medicine. Casey was kind enough to take time from his studies to share some thoughts with his alma mater. Connect with Casey on LinkedIn to learn more about his journey to medical school.

Tell us more about what you're doing currently.

The first two years of medical school are typically spent focusing on didactic learning. For UW, the curriculum is slightly truncated to a one and a half year model with a focus on small group learning and early clinical exposure. Most days are a mixture of large group lecture followed by student-led small groups reviewing current content with instructors there for guidance. Outside of the classroom we spend time in the hospital practicing our interview and physical exam skills on admitted patients, and in the clinic adjusting our approach to a different chief complaint presentation. We also participate in frequent workshops led by faculty physicians to add to our clinical "toolbox" (advanced physical exam skills, how to handle difficult patient encounters, etc.). Outside of all that, many students find themselves involved with student-led interest groups, volunteer opportunities (clinical and non-clinical), and intramural sports/other hobbies.

What resources did you find most helpful when it came to career or graduate/professional school exploring, preparing, and applying?

The AAMC provides a very clear road map to the application process. There is a plethora of resources and advice for pre-medical students getting ready to apply. Outside of that I found Medical School Headquarters to be a very valuable resource during the pre-med/application process. The guidance provided was clear, thoughtful, and supported by the advice of medical school admission board members, pre-med advisors, and practicing physicians. I also incorporated a number of different podcasts into my research as a means of learning while I was on the move. Some of my favorites: any podcast by Ryan Gray (founder of MedSchoolHQ) and All Access: Med School Admissions (for school specific information). Be advised, resource overload is a real thing, and some individuals offer very poor advice. My rule of thumb: be very wary of the pre-med forums, seek out individuals in the field you are interested in (students, admission advisors, working professionals), and recognize the path towards professional school is intended to be unique to you! There is not a list of generic boxes you can check that will shuttle you right into medical school.

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What was your favorite thing about being a UW Bothell Husky?

Without a doubt it was the people of UWB: from my peers, to my advisors, to the instructors, I always felt supported and empowered. The intimate learning environment provided me a space to grow, both academically and individually. UWB granted me the resources of a large university nestled into a quiet, personal community allowing me to develop into the person I am today.

If you could go back to your first day at UWB, what advice would you give yourself?

Being a young college student, you face the unfortunate reality of trying to decide where your life is heading without the experience to wholeheartedly make that decision. The place you currently sit is as much about exploration as it is about progressing to the next step of your life. With that, please be open and excited for your undifferentiated future, lean into the unknown and embrace the opportunities that come with it. Although it is anxiety-provoking, this is an exciting time where you likely have more freedom to choose and change than any other time to come.

Thank you, Casey!

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Each month, we'll feature a UWB Alum or upcoming Pre-Health event or resource. Check back regularly to see what we'll feature next. It could be you!