Hello! My name is Faiza Sarwar, and I am a sophomore Biochemistry Honors major in the Health Science Scholars program. I am currently an intern in HCMP.
Describe a shadowing experience that has impacted you the most:
The most meaningful shadowing experience I have had so far was with a retinologist. This specialty was one that I was not aware of, and I always used to insist that I would never work with eyes because watching procedures on television made me squirm. However, from the moment I entered the office, I was approached with the utmost respect from every staff member. The medical student on rotation there would take the time to call me over during appointments and explain complex things to me. The doctor would address me directly in the patient room, informing me about what she was doing and why. Her level of confidence, poise, and compassion in every patient room was admirable; I know that her mannerisms are something I will carry with me throughout my pre-medical career. Being surrounded by staff who respected me and were excited for me to learn from them while gaining a new perspective on a field I never thought I would consider made me realize the true worth of this HCMP experience. As I was leaving, the doctor spoke with me one-on-one and provided me with insight into the journey of becoming a retinologist, as well as advice on how to make the most out of my shadowing. She seemed genuinely interested in learning about me and my motivations and encouraged me to come again and shadow her anytime. This connection would not have been possible without HCMP.
How has HCMP benefited your professional or individual goals? HCMP has provided me with a sense of confidence in myself, allowing me to communicate directly with health professionals, lead recruitment events, and plan service events. HCMP has the perfect combination of shadowing, service, leadership, mentorship, and community.
What has been your favorite aspect of HCMP?
I applied to HCMP as a lost freshman, searching for a sense of community on this large campus. HCMP members welcomed me with open arms. Everyone in this organization is always willing to help, whether through giving advice, offering rides, or being shoulders to cry on. I love that HCMP is small enough to establish such a close community of people, but is big enough to where I am still meeting new coordinators and directors at events. I genuinely consider all of my fellow interns, family, and the love that I have felt from the coordinators and directors is incomparable.
What do you like to do in your free time?
In my free time, I enjoy reading (adding new books to my list before finishing one), dancing (mostly mini-dance parties to de-stress), and playing volleyball with friends (whether it goes over the net or not)!