“Study abroad is a redefining college experience.” This is a phrase familiar to most of us students in higher education, yet entering this program was even more than that. For this past summer, I was fortunate enough to experience the UA Global Medcats program in Burgos, Spain through the Atlantis shadowing program. It was an enticing five weeks of exploration, learning, and personal and professional development.
This program embodied both shadowing of residents and doctors as well as discovering different parts of the country and culture. My fellow students and I were able to develop relationships with the residents at our hospital that developed into lasting friendships. Both during the weeks and on the weekends, we were able to experience concerts, festivals, nature, and even visit hometowns of our friends. Obviously, these were the social highlights of the experience, but I gained so much more insight into my potential career path.
Throughout each week at the hospital, I was able to view different specialties in the hospital such as pediatrics, cardiology, or plastic surgery. One of the most special departments to me was otorhinolaryngology, because there was a very diverse group of patients and surgeries. As I was observing the removal of a tumor in someone’s inner ear, I confirmed that this is what I wanted to do. By the end of my five weeks, I had determined that I wanted to continue my education in the medical field in aspirations to becoming a surgeon. I hope to return back to Spain soon to visit my mentors and inform them of my progress in following in their footsteps.