Urban medicine. Rural medicine. Global health. Academic and curricular policy—or health care policy in government. Daniel Kreatsoulas has always wanted to be a doctor (and his mom has his second-grade projects to prove it) but he now realizes that medicine can lead a person in many different career directions.
“NEOMED really allows you to see all of that and to experience all (of) that,’’ says the fourth-year College of Medicine student.
“I think we have some of the best students out there,’’ says Kreatsoulas. And as a member of the Student Impact Committee to help raise awareness about the importance of LCME accreditation, he sees the many ways NEOMED students are empowered to take an active role on campus.
Kreatsoulas is also a member of the Student Curriculum Council, where he worked with the Curriculum Management and Assessment Committee to move an Emergency Medicine (EM) rotation from the fourth year to the third. Students had been asking to move the EM course up to the third year, because it’s a big help in preparing for the Step 2 exam.
“The emergency room makes you see patients and decide quickly which diagnostic tests should be done next, or what’s the next appropriate step. Emergency Medicine and the Step 2 exam really go hand in hand,’’ Kreatsoulas says. Administrators agreed with the students that it made sense to move the EM course to the third year—the year for required electives.
“We also lengthened the fourth year slightly, to make it more in line with what the national trend was: to get more elective opportunities and more learning done before going into intern year, to help bridge the gap between medical school and practicing as a physician,’’ says Kreatsoulas. The graduating class of 2017—the first to experience the change—was happy for the new opportunity to do rotations earlier and interview for residency matches.
Kreatsoulas feels good to have been involved in curriculum assessment. The medicine student has also found leadership opportunities through student groups like the American Medical Association chapter on campus and the American Medical Student Association.
Finding a balance
It’s not all serious at NEOMED.
As a first-year student excited about the then-new Sequoia Wellness fitness center, Kreatsoulas teamed up with a classmate, Greg Ferenchak, to start the Walking Whales Barbell Club—still going strong.
Kreatsoulas has always been proud of NEOMED’s emphasis on building solid patient-physician relationships. Faculty have taught him the value of taking a high-quality patient history, in which he listens carefully to the patient to learn what has been happening.
Now, as a fourth-year student who has completed a rotation, he can say it with confidence: NEOMED prepares its students well.