News & Stories

Victoria Wobser, First Graduate of NEOMED’s Accelerated Program in Family Medicine, near a garden.

Meet Victoria Wobser, First Graduate of NEOMED’s Accelerated Program in Family Medicine

In her childhood in Clyde, Ohio, a rural town of 6,200 people near Sandusky, Victoria Wobser did not grow up dreaming of being a doctor.

“I didn’t have a whole lot of exposure to the medical field,” she said. “I’m the only one in my family who is in medicine. I’m also a first-generation college student.”

As she got older, the idea of a career in medicine began to take shape. “I met friends whose parents were doctors, and I just got a little bit more exposure to what being a doctor is like than just visiting my pediatrician,” she said.

Saturday, May 7, Wobser was hooded as the first graduate of the College of Medicine’s Accelerated Family Medicine Track, through which students complete the M.D. degree in three years instead of the usual four.

The AFMT accelerates the curriculum for selected students who plan to enter a family medicine residency at a NEOMED-affiliated hospital after graduation. The students take an eight-week clinical immersion course the summer between the first and second year, and they begin clinical rotations early, so they can complete them in a single calendar year.

“In some ways it has been intense,” Wobser said of the accelerated program. “But I think in other ways, it’s made me a lot more relaxed.”

For instance, the pressures related to choosing a specialty, doing interviews and lining up a residency are condensed into the first year of the program. Her residency in family medicine at Summa Health System Akron was decided nearly two years ago. “After that (first year), I could focus on doing what I enjoy and really focus on my learning. I wasn’t concerned about things like who I was going to get letters of recommendation from.”

Wobser was also enrolled in the Rural Medicine Education (RMED) Pathway Program. She plans to remain in Ohio to practice, preferably in Northwest Ohio, close to her family home in Clyde.

“A lot of the community hospitals are shutting down and there are shortages of both primary care physicians and specialists,” she said. “I think it’s important to go back where I came from, to give back to the community that helped bring me up and to help people who often forgotten.”