Making Progress on Making Life Decisions

May 31, 2016

     I’m pretty sure that by now everyone on Team Cambodia knows that this trip has the potential to be real “game changer” for me. However, for those of you reading this back in the States, I’ll fill you in. I am a rising senior Biochemistry/Molecular Biology (aka BMB) major on track to go to medical school, and although I have always enjoyed learning about the body and how different factors influence the well-being of the body, I haven’t yet decided if medicine is the right career path for me. Again, I’ve always been attracted to the idea of being a doctor, but I struggle with the idea of waking up every morning and going to do the work of a doctor. I haven’t yet found my passion for the profession, and I am praying that this mission helps bring clarity to my decision.


     With that being said, I will primarily talk about my experience on the floor with the medical students. The first day of clinics, I worked with Reneé Franklin, but we didn’t get to see many patients, and so on a “what-do-I-want-to-do-with-my-life” note, I did not get much clarity. However, yesterday I worked with Dane Hellwig, and we saw a plethora of people. I am so appreciative of him showing me the ropes of clinics. Even as an undergraduate student, Dane gave me the opportunity to take patient histories, perform physical examinations, and assist in the assessments and plans for the patients. That experience gave me more excitement for “doctoring."


     Then on the final note, today was awesome as well. I worked with Laura Lowery, and at the end of the day, after seeing and talking through some really cool cases with her, I feel even more positively about the possibility of a medical future for myself. I’m very excited to see where the rest of this trip takes me, physically and mentally. And socially. And spiritually! This trip is and was definitely worth it, and although I cannot say for sure that “I want to be a doctor,” I can say that I am more positive than I was three days ago. That is progress, and for right now, that is perfectly fine with me.

Justis Ward, Undergraduate Student

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