The Students in Medicine (SIM) Club welcomed Dr. Fernando Romero P’20 onto campus on December 4 for a presentation on Romero’s education and career as an obstetrician and gynecologist (Ob-Gyn).
Romero is the first in SIM’s recent initiative to bring inspirational medical professionals to campus. The goal of the initiative is to help encourage students to pursue medical careers.
Skyler Spaulding ’20, a Board Member of SIM, said, “Students in Medicine’s main purpose is to connect students with interest in medical careers to resources to teach them more about the medical field and show them what it would be like to work in that field and even to educate kids who don’t know what they want to do about medical careers.”
According to audience member Emrys Elkouh ’20, Romero’s talk provided him more information about a life in medicine, specifically regarding medical school.
Elkouh wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “Medicine has interested me for a number of years. When I heard that Romero was going to be speaking about his journey through medical school and how us as students can best prepare for a similar experience, I was intrigued.”
In his presentation, Romero shared with students that his desire to make a difference led him to become a doctor.
Romero said, “As a physician, you have to be a special person to make a difference in many people’s lives. Why? You’re doing something not only for yourself, but mainly for someone else, is something of great value, because not many people are concerned about others but mainly concerned about their own personal well being.”
Romero added that he went into the medical field because he wanted to do something challenging. Medicine provided that everyday challenge for him.
Romero was born in Colombia, but during his childhood, his family moved between Puerto Rico and Michigan. When he was in the fifth grade, his school held a career day and a physician came to visit. Romero, inspired by his story and the medical field, decided to pursue a medical career.
Sebastian Romero ’20, Fernando Romero’s son and a Board Member of SIM, said, “I think my dad’s drive to work is extremely admirable. Growing up my whole life, having my dad leave at least once a week at 3:00 a.m. to go and deliver a child and just hear him walk out and leave the house — that kind of will is something I have really grown to admire and respect about him, because it is something that not everyone has, and that desire to go and help people even when you have to sacrifice things and your own sleep is something I personally want to do one day.”
When he was in his third year of residency, Fernando Romero decided to specialize in Obstetrics and Gynecology after doing rotations in many different disciplines.
In an interview with The Phillipian, Fernando Romero said, “I think I decided [to become an Ob-Gyn] when I was in my third year [of residency]. I did rotations in obstetrics and gynecology. The number one reason was because of the positive outcomes. Most of the time, I want to say more than 99 percent of the time, most people have positive outcomes [working with Ob-Gyn].”
Fernando Romero was motivated to become a doctor because of his desire to make a difference in others’ lives and continue his education throughout his life. Additionally, he sought the continual challenges and the many opportunities and career options present in the medical industry.
In his presentation, Fernando Romero said, “If you become a doctor, it could be a medical doctor, a doctor in veterinary medicine, a doctor in osteopathic medicine, a doctor in podiatry, the opportunities which you have with a medical degree are pretty much infinite.”
Fernando Romero now works as an Ob-Gyn at the Holy Family Hospital in Methuen. According to Fernando Romero, is upbringing between the Spanish-speaking island of Puerto Rico and Michigan has positively impacted his career by helping him better communicate with his patients.
Fernando Romero said, “The patient population I serve, which is in the Merrimack Valley, [has] a [large] Hispanic population. I don’t have an issue especially since I speak their language. As a matter of fact, I do get quite a few patients who transfer over… because I speak their language and I can connect with their cultural issues and idiosyncrasies. It definitely has a positive effect on how I treat them and their care. A positive feeling is mutual and it definitely helps in every aspect.”
In addition to Fernando Romero’s presentation, SIM will welcome the Emergency Room Chief from Lawrence General Hospital and a few professors from local universities over the course of Winter and Spring Term. The club will also offer certification in C.P.R. and workshops on creating sutures.
Jason DiNapoli ’19, a Board Member of SIM, said, “Andover opens so many doors for students and I think it is great to hear the personal experience of people in multiple fields, whether it is business, medical, law. I think this is just great exposure for students who aspire to pick up a career in the medical field.”
Editor’s Note: Gigi Glover is an Associate Sports Editor for The Phillipian.