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BWH Chief Medical Resident Chiadi Ndumele congratulates HMS student Marie Carlo during last week’s Department of Medicine Match Day celebration.
Between his first and second year at Harvard Medical School, Alex Herrera spent a summer in a Zambian village helping implement a safe water practice course and improve agricultural and irrigation systems. But it was the devastating effect of HIV and AIDS on Africans that reaffirmed Herrera’s desire to become a physician.
“I was particularly moved by the burden of HIV and the stigma surrounding the disease in that community,” said Herrera, who returned to South Africa two years later to conduct HIV and tuberculosis research.
“It was an incredible opportunity to conduct research that hopefully will have an impact on care in the region,” he said.
Last week, Herrera took another step in his medical career that will give him the education and training to continue making a difference. He joined 74 soon-to-be medical school graduates from around the country and world who were matched to BWH for their internal medicine residency.
Many of the incoming first-year residents from Boston-area schools gathered at the Department of Medicine’s Match Day celebration to receive the official Brigham welcome from Joel Katz, MD, director of the Internal Medicine Residency program, and BWH faculty including Marshall Wolf, MD, Bruce Levy, MD, Maria Yialamas, MD, William Taylor, MD, and other faculty and residents.
During the event, Yialamas praised the incoming residents. “We feel very fortunate to have such an outstanding group of students who matched with us. I just can’t say enough about them. They are a diverse, hard-working and talented group,” she said.
For incoming resident Zuzana Tothova, coming to BWH is a dream come true.
“I feel extremely honored and excited beyond words to be able to pursue my next few years of clinical training here with exceptional mentors among both faculty and residents,” said Tothova, who is originally from Slovakia and carried out her PhD work on hematopoietic and leukemic stem cell biology along side Brigham faculty member Gary Gilliland, PhD, MD, who profoundly influenced her interest in academic medicine.
Some of Vivek Garg’s fondest memories from childhood were going to his father’s office or rounding with him in the hospital, where he practiced pulmonology and internal medicine in New Jersey. For Garg, matching at BWH means getting a step closer to what he had always dreamed of.
“I always remember how my father spoke about his patients, and it struck me that medicine was a unique way to connect with people,” said Garg.
For Marie Carlo, who previously worked on community research projects with Latinos to encourage patients to continue mental health treatment, the first day of residency can’t arrive soon enough.
“I wish I was starting tomorrow,” said Carlo.
See more photos from Match Day.