School of Medicine celebrates Class of 2017

Brian Wasicek, a student in The Frank H. Netter M.D. School of Medicine at Quinnipiac University, examines 20-month-old John Fuller at Pediatric Associates of Cheshire, P.C. Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017. Wasicek participates in the longitudinal Medical Student Home (MeSH) program with Dr. James O’Connor working one half-day each week with Dr. O'Connor.

Treating the whole patient

Brian Wasicek, a student in The Frank H. Netter M.D. School of Medicine, examines 20-month-old John Fuller at Pediatric Associates of Cheshire, P.C Brian participates in the longitudinal Medical Student Home (MeSH) program with Dr. James O’Connor.

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Our first graduating class of the Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine is already making a name for itself.

On National Match Day, 100 percent of our graduates earned a residency assignment — at some of the most prestigious institutions in America.

As the 58 members of our inaugural class become doctors at 1 p.m. on Sunday, they are ready to distinguish themselves in hospitals, clinics and medical centers across the United States.

Quinnipiac first year medical student, Van Mai, works with Dr. Renika McLeod-Labissiere and her patients at Prospect Family Medicine on May 5, 2015. Image by Johnathon Henninger

Up close and personal

Each medical student is matched with a Connecticut-based primary care physician who serves as that student's preceptor in the Medical Student Home (MeSH) program. Here, Van Mai, MD ’18, meets with patients of Dr. Renika McLeod-Labissiere at Prospect Family Medicine.

They are headed to a variety of prestigious residency programs coast to coast, including those located at Yale University, the Johns Hopkins University, the University of North Carolina and the University of California-San Francisco.

In keeping with our mission, 12 percent are entering family medicine, which exceeds the national average of 7 percent. They possess the skills and instincts to interview, diagnose, conduct research and perform at the highest level and under the most stressful circumstances.

This was made possible through early clinical exposure in the Medical Student Home Program, an award-winning national network of partnerships and affiliated institutions, and four years of student advising designed to match temperament, skills and goals to the right medical specialty. Even more so, it was made possible by their own dedication and sacrifice.

James Fraser said that he was nervous, “but very ready to open up my envelope” on Match Day. He was ecstatic to see one of his top choices that March afternoon: general surgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia. “Looking back at all the hard work, I really loved medical school, but I am ready for the next step,” he said.

Commencement isn’t an end, but a beginning. This is a day to commemorate the hard work and sacrifice our students put in over the last four years, and look ahead with excitement to the career that awaits them. When they walk off the stage, they are more than the pair of letters that accompany their names.

They are pioneers, forging the path for generations of doctors to follow — and deserve to be celebrated.

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