Justin Dickson, OMS III at Midwestern University-AZCOM, Awarded $2,500 TOMF Founders' Scholarship
June 6, 2016
Justin Dickson’s hometown is Chandler, Arizona and he hopes to practice Emergency Medicine after his days at Midwestern University-AZCOM. As an OMS III, he’s in the thick of his rotations, but isn’t far removed from the days when he’d “wake up early, head to the library, and study all day until 5:30. I then came home, ate dinner, helped put the kids to bed, then studied for another couple of hours until bed. Rinse, repeat.” It’s not surprising that he’s looking forward to spending more time with his family when he’s finished medical school. For aspiring medical students, Justin suggests that they get exposure to as many fields of medicine as possible and plan how to finance their education. He wants physicians to make wise decisions that will make them happy in the long run because, as he puts it, “happy physicians provide higher quality care.”
1. What is your hometown?
2. What caused you to choose medicine as a career?
I enjoyed learning Biology from a young age, and have always enjoyed interacting with people, so medicine just felt like a natural fit.
3. Which specialty do you plan to practice?
I hope to practice Emergency Medicine.
4. What does your typical school day look like?
As a first or second year, I would wake up early, head to the library, and study all day until 5:30. I then came home, ate dinner, helped put the kids to bed, then studied for another couple of hours until bed. Rinse, repeat. As a third year, it really depends on the rotation. I'm typically seeing patients 8-12 hours a day, and studying for a couple hours in the evening.
5. What qualities do you look for in a mentor or role model?
I look for someone who I feel has mastered their field of study, and is approachable. It's hard to find both, but when I do, I feel I really learn a lot from those individuals.
6. As a mentor and role model yourself, what advice would you give to a student considering medicine as a career?
Spend time before medical school getting exposure to many fields of medicine, because you really need to have an idea what you want to do before you even begin medical school. Also, try to have a plan for how you are going to finance your education. The happiest physicians I know were careful with their finances and their loan burdens, and are content with their careers because they are not still struggling to pay down a massive student loan 15 years after graduating. And if you ask me, happy physicians provide higher quality care.
7. What is the most interesting thing you’ve discovered so far in your medical training?
Just how many things can go wrong with the Human Body, and what a miracle it is when everything is working the way it should.
Spending more time with my family.